Supported internships are work-based study programmes for 16 to 24-year-olds, who have special educational needs and disabilities, who also have an Educational Health Care Plan. The scheme is designed to empower and equip autistic and/or learning disabled young people and adults into work.
In the UK, only 4.8% of adults with a learning disability or autism known to local authorities are in employment. Liverpool City Council – as one of the largest employers in the city – is committed to ensuring these talented, highly-skilled and passionate people are not overlooked.
Joe’s placement on Eurovision followed time spent at Central Library and in the private housing team, supporting the Homes for Ukraine initiative.
Working as an admin support officer, Joe performed a multitude of tasks, such as filing, post management, stock taking, sorting deliveries, data input and invoice management.
Though not a fan of Eurovision at first, Joe quickly became engrossed, and got stuck in. His dedication was recognised more widely and he received an award in the “Most Progress” category for his data entry skills and his significant development in a short amount of time.
Joe told us: “I watched the show with my family, as it involved Liverpool, and I was proud to have worked with the team that made it happen.
“Unfortunately, I didn’t recognise anyone famous, as I was too busy keeping up to date with work in the office. I worked at The Village during the day, setting things up for the afternoon and evening shows.”
“I felt nervous when I first knew about this supported internship but, when I started my first placement in Central Library, I knew I made the right choice. I really enjoyed it. I did some physical tasks such as organising the books on the shelves. I learnt computer skills too. I was scanning books and entering them into the system.
“My second placement was in private housing. It was different from the library because I had to use a system called Tascomi on behalf of the Homes for Ukraine programme. I also scanned sheets of paperwork for property application forms and I got to go out on external visits to various sites taking pictures.”
“Please consider an internship. It has helped me gain so much more confidence in the working world and has helped me to talk to people I don’t know.
Joe, Liverpool City Council supported intern.
“I have made friends too, and I like working with the staff in the departments. It is so different to being in college. I cannot wait to start working in a paid job and I never thought I would be ready for employment without starting this programme and having the support from my coach.
My advice is to try new things and don’t be worried about being nervous as you will have support to help you.”
Liverpool City Council will be taking on a new cohort of supported interns later this year.
If you’re interested in being an intern, or you’re an employer who would like to offer a work placement, please get in touch.