Here are a few examples of the different types of support that we offer at LD Awareness “Employment Support Service”
‘Pete’ was referred to LD Awareness Employment Support Service by his Auntie. Pete had resigned from his last job as he was being bullied and didn’t know what to do. He had been unemployed for over 6 months when referred and his health had deteriorated over this time. Pete had started to worry about lots of things and this affected his mental health and his physical health.
After a couple of meetings with Mat (LD Awareness) to get to know Pete, they started job searching, as well as supporting Pete to ensure he was on the correct benefits whilst job searching.
With Mat’s help, Pete applied for a benefit called ‘Employment & Support Allowance’ (ESA) which doesn’t carry as much “pressure” as Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) does. While waiting for the benefit to be processed, Pete and Mat applied for several jobs, whilst also meeting up regularly to ensure Pete felt more confident about himself.
After just over two months of working together, Pete was successful with an application to a well know garden centre store. Mat liaised with the manager there to ensure that Pete’s introduction back into full time work was as smooth as possible. Pete was also supported to contact the benefits office to cancel his ESA claim as it was no longer needed.
Pete keeps in contact with Mat and any issues he may have, they discuss and work through them together.
Alan was referred to LD Awareness by his social worker. Alan had attended local authority day centre for several years and during a review, he was offered alternative forms of support.
Alan told his social worker that he had always wanted to work, and so was referred to Mat at LD Awareness Employment Support Service.
Mat met with Alan and his Mum a couple of times at their house to answer any of their questions and to ensure that Alan (and his Mum) felt happy to work with Mat.
Alan and Mat then started the “Getting to Know You” process and filled out some forms to help with this.
As Alan didn’t know what type of work he wanted, Mat arranged a work trial in a local factory’s canteen. Alan worked every Monday morning for 6 weeks and was job coached / supported by Mat at all times. This gave Mat an opportunity to identify Alan’s skills and see how he interacted with other employees, as well as following instructions etc.
After the trial, a review meeting was held and Alan decided that he’d prefer to work outdoors.
His Mum told Mat that Alan used to help out with the day centre’s allotment and that he enjoyed gardening at home.
Mat then contacted a local community centre that he knew were advertising for a part time paid gardener. With LD Awareness’ support the employer arranged a “working interview” (an opportunity to showcase what skills Alan has, rather than sitting in a formal interview) as a reasonable adjustment, and was then offered the job.
LD Awareness supported Alan and his Mum with all of the relevant paperwork to inform the DWP that Alan was now in supported work.
Mat continues to job coach Alan each shift.
Sharon’s Role as a Job Coach
Sharon is Leigh’s job coach. Her role is part funded through the Governments “Access to Work” scheme and LD Awareness facilitate this on behalf of Leigh and his employer.
As Leigh’s job coach, Sharon supports him with various aspects of his role as “Co-Chair of the Learning Difficulties Partnership Board”.
Sharon supports Leigh to attend meetings and scribes for him during these meetings. Sharon will then write these notes up in full, using “easy English” accessible language, which Leigh types up. During this process Sharon role is to ensure Leigh’s understanding of the topics that were discussed in the meeting using 360 degree feedback techniques to ascertain understanding.
With Sharon support, Leigh has been trained to use a daily task list which helps him to see a break down of each job that needs completing each day. This enables Leigh to remain focused and on track when working within deadlines.
Another part of Sharons role is to support Leigh to manage his emails and breaks them down to ensure that Leigh understands the content. They then discuss and compose a reply together. If, for example, it’s an email regarding a meeting invitation, with support, Leigh follows a meeting plan to diarise this, add it to his calendar as well as add it to his task list.
Sharon is also there to ensure Leigh works to a high standard and is on time for meetings and appointments.
Sharon and Leigh have a very good, professional relationship, built on respect and trust, which is vital for Leigh to ensure he is working to the best of his ability.