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Young adults get to grips with supported internships

12:49 pm, Monday, 21st August 2023 - 10 months ago

Children and families

On Monday 14th August, we welcomed our new cohort of young people and their parent carers to their second keeping-in-touch day at Diana Princess of Wales Hospital, Grimsby, where they will soon be embarking on their exciting journey into Supported Internships with the help of DFN Project Search.

This September, eight young people aged 18-25 are taking on supported roles in a variety of posts within the hospital setting. Supported Internships offer young people with an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) who have learning difficulties and/or autism the opportunity to try out a variety of different jobs with the support of a job coach. The aim is to create a pathway to paid employment at the end of the year-long programme. Last year, two of the Supported Interns impressed employers so much they have now gained paid employment at Diana Princess of Wales Hospital, Grimsby.

This year’s young people will have the opportunity to experience job roles in catering, hospitality, engineering and maintenance, computers and administration, retail and porter services. We are all excited to see how our new interns get on and the skills they develop over the year.

A parent from the programme said:

“We only realised recently this was an option for our daughter. It is a great opportunity to gain knowledge and skills in a supportive environment.”

One of the young people taking part in the new cohort said:

“I am quite friendly, so I am looking forward to meeting people and having a good chin wag in my job role as a porter.”

Clare Linfitt, North East Lincolnshire SEND Services Manager, said:

“The wide range of roles available this year offer our young people a fantastic opportunity to rotate and try out different jobs. It’s such an exciting time for the Interns and their families.

“Although it may naturally be a little daunting to start with for the young people, as it is something very different than they have previously encountered, last year showed us just what a tremendously positive experience this can be.”

Annie Cook, Post-16 EHCP Lead Co-ordinator, said:

“A huge thank you to Diana Princess of Wales Hospital and Linkage, who is our education provider for DFN Project SEARCH. Last year’s project was a huge success and once again we are excited to see the progress our new students will make.”

Janice Spencer, Director of Children’s Services at North East Lincolnshire Council said:

“We are so pleased to be able to offer these young people the opportunity build their confidence and skills. Supported internships open the door to an opportunity that young people might not otherwise take. This is a real positive investment in young people and the community.”

Claire Cookson, CEO of DFN Project SEARCH, said: “I am delighted to see the project at the Diana Princess of Wales Hospital take on a second cohort of young people this year. It’s fantastic to see graduates from last year succeed and I’m excited about the potential for this new group.

“Thank you to our partners at North East Lincolnshire Council and Northern Lincolnshire and Goole NHS Trust who have made it possible for the interns to embark on a journey that will help transform their lives.”

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