New Job Opportunities For Youngsters With Learning Disabilities

A new scheme to help young people with learning disabilities secure employment has been officially launched at Forth Valley Royal Hospital.

The pilot scheme, known as Project Search, is the first programme of its kind in Forth Valley and will give 11 young people aged between 18 and 24, the chance to gain work experience in a number of support services roles. These include portering, catering, mailroom and house-keeping roles.

The scheme was officially launched by Jamie Hepburn, Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills, and is being delivered by Falkirk Council in partnership with Forth Valley College, NHS Forth Valley and Serco.

The successful interns will have the opportunity to work in a number of different areas across the hospital during the 9 month programme and will have the support of Job Coach as well as a lecturer within an onsite classroom.

Project Search was developed in Cincinnati Children’s Hospital in 1996. It was based on the principle of working with a large employer, with support and tutoring to replicate a real working environment. The model runs over an academic year and the students work in three placements. They start and finish each day in their Project Search classroom where they discuss what they have been doing that day, participate in skills training and carry out supported job searches with the support of their Job Coach.

The scheme, which officially starts on 21st August 2018, supports NHS Forth Valley’s Workforce Strategy – Youth Framework, and is part of the Board’s commitment to supporting a diverse and sustainable workforce.