Giving back to the younger generation

Getting your first job can be intimidating as a young person, and without previous work experience, it can also be difficult. But the support of businesses, Havering College is aiming to make this process smoother with their Supported Work Placements.

What is a Supported Work Placement?

While similar in many ways to an apprenticeship or internship, there are several differences between these and a Supported Work Placement. At Havering College, students on Supported Work Placement courses are provided with a higher level of support than trainees or apprentices, with a job coach assigned to them for their work placement.

The Supported Internship programme is designed to enable people under the age of 25 with learning difficulties and/or disabilities to gain sustained paid employment. Students attend one full-day of classes a week, as well as a half-day Job Club for 16 weeks. In the Job Club the students learn to create a CV and covering letter, and gain vital interview skills and learn how to look for and apply for a job.

Calling all employers!

As part of the course, students are also required to complete 250 hours of in work placement over the academic year. This is where employers and businesses are urged to come forward and volunteer their services to provide a Supported Work Placement for a student.

Through placing students with well-established employers, Havering College hope that they will learn a good work ethic, as well as boost their confidence.

To start, students will work one day a week and be accompanied by a job coach who works with them and assists in training them in their job role. The job coach is there to assist and offer support to both the student and employer, and will stay until the student is confident in their role, cutting the time down to only half a day spent with the student at the work site, until they are no longer required.

However, support is always available if required, and the job coach will come back once a month to review how the work placement is going.

If employers and employees require Disability Awareness training and Systematic training, this can also be provided to ensure that the entire experience is meaningful and helpful to all involved.

Do you think your business can assist in this worthy and well-meaning cause? Call Jayne Hart, the Havering College Enterprise and Work Experience Coordinator on 01708 462 865 or send an email to [email protected].