This programme is for people aged 16-25 with an EHCP and who have paid employment as a future aspiration and who wish to continue with their functional skills.
It is a one year programme with around 16 hours a week working in one of our projects and one day working in college undertaking functional skills. We run this programme with Kent Training and Apprenticeships (KTA) as the education provider and we provide the work placement. KTA are the named person on the EHCP. More information here – Supported internships – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
To fund the work placement we make a claim from DWP through the Access To Work programme. More information here – Access to Work: get support if you have a disability or health condition: What Access to Work is – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk).
We commence the programme each year in September with an induction programme in the first week which is usually delivered in Canterbury (transport arrangements can be discussed). This first week brings the whole cohort together learning about organisational structure, how to request holiday, how to report sickness/absence, health and safety, fire safety and other work-related topics. They may get to meet their line manager.
Following this week they begin their programme in their allocated site and continue their learning programme. Regular learning opportunities as a group are offered throughout the programme.
Progress is monitored jointly with us and KTA each month with targets being set and tracked and a chance to identify any other learning needs.
Trainees work through a structured learning programme in line with the AQA Unit Award Scheme which generate certificates for each module they work through. This provides them with a portfolio of learning which is presented to them at the end of the programme. More information here – AQA | Programmes | Unit Award Scheme. We work to blend this with possible work placement/learning opportunities in mainstream work settings working with local business partners. This is dependent on the aspirations and strengths of the trainee.
All our trainees have the opportunity to participate in working our catering events/weddings/parties which are fun as well as providing a different learning experience. Our ultimate goal is to provide our trainees with the skills, resilience and knowledge to be able to move into paid, sustainable employment, volunteering or to continue in an education pathway.