As part of Learning Disability Awareness week 2017, we have collected good news stories from our members. Here, Community Integrated Care share success stories of their Vocational Support Service.
Vocational Support Service works with 46 people across Merseyside and Cheshire, to find them work or volunteering opportunities that reflects their skills, interests and life goals. They provide people with learning disabilities, mental health concerns and autism with a range of support, including mentoring and training.
Vocational Support, which is part of national social care charity Community Integrated Care, also works very closely with employers, ensuring that they receive all of the support and guidance necessary to offer a great placement.
Service Leader, Renata Davies, says: “Work is a right that we all enjoy, yet too many people with support needs are excluded from this. At Vocational Support, our team is absolutely committed to overcoming these barriers.
She adds: “We are extremely proud to have been shortlisted for several national care awards and we were the first employment service in the UK to achieve Autism Accreditation status.”
Here are some of the incredible people Vocational Support has helped secure meaningful opportunities for.
Joe joined Vocational Support 20 years ago and has enjoyed a variety of work opportunities. For the past 10 years he has been a valued employee at McDonald’s and the customers often comment on how friendly and helpful he is.
The position in McDonald’s was a great opportunity for Joe to develop his social skills. He became more independent and his confidence grew so much that he was able to travel to and from work unsupported. Vocational Support then decided to see if Joe could work without the need of support and McDonald’s were hugely supportive in planning this transition.
Vocational Support’s Service Leader, Renata Davies, says: “Joe’s whole life has changed as a result of his employers giving him opportunities. His colleagues have become friends, he has a great social life and his confidence has grown. So much so, that Joe often drops into the office for a catch up and helps us interview potential new staff.”
Amy McConville first got in touch with Vocational support seven years ago. Amy has always been a people person, and was overjoyed when she landed her dream job at Costa Coffee.
Since then, Amy’s progress has been phenomenal – she’s blossomed with confidence, skill and a passion for customer service. Her outstanding rapport with her customers has been recognised by everyone around her… not to mention she makes a mean Cappuccino!
Her contribution to the team hasn’t gone unnoticed by her managers, who said: “We love having Amy as part of our team. Not only is she hard working, she is an absolute star who never fails to bring a smile to everyone’s face!”
Colin has a great eye for detail and wanted to work in administration. He now offers admin support for Community Integrated Care’s North West Regional Office.
Colin’s Vocational Support Worker says, “I really enjoy working with Colin. He is a man with many skills and a valuable member of the team. His efficiency is incredible.”
Colin has been invaluable in supporting the team with various admin and HR-related tasks. Colin also helps raise awareness about autism by hosting ‘Living with Autism’ events for Community Integrated Care’s staff.