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Preparing for Adulthood - Help to find work


Having a job can help you in many ways.  As well as earning money, a job helps you become more independent, build your skills and confidence and make new friendships.

With the right help and support many young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) are able to move into paid employment.

Schools have a responsibility to give all young people independent careers advice from Year 8 onwards.  Schools can ask other agencies such as Adviza to deliver this on their behalf.  Schools also give young people opportunities to do work experience to give you the chance to think about what job you would like to do and to develop new skills.

You may start to have discussions about your long term goals for employment from an early age.  When you reach Year 9  from that point onwards the Annual Review meeting with the school or college gives you the opportunity to look at employment options and any support you may need to achieve your goals.  You might look at training options such as traineeships and apprenticeships or going onto further study before you move into work.  Planning for your employment will be included in your Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan if you have one.

You can receive support in the local area from supported employment agencies like Ways into Work  to find a job that suits you.  There are  also national government schemes such as Access to Work that can help you get into work and certain benefits that are available to you when you are in work.

The video below shows some case studies of young people at the Borough's Special School, Manor Green, who have been supported into employment through Ways into Work.

To find out more..


Apprenticeships, traineeships and supported internships 


Work based learning is a good way to gain experience of work. Young people with Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans can continue with their Plan whilst undertaking an Apprenticeship, Traineeship or Supported Internship.  Click on the blue links below to find out more..

Apprenticeships offer young people a way of getting qualifications whilst earning money and gaining experience.  Many apprenticeships lead to highly skilled careers.

A Traineeship is a course with work experience that gets you ready for work or an apprenticeship.

Supported Internships are structured study programmes that are mainly based with an employer.  Supported internships are unpaid but wherever possible, they support you to move into paid work at the end of the programme.



Local organisations to support you to get a job 


Ways into Work is a Supported Employment agency that supports young people aged 18+ with a disability to find paid work, apprenticeships, traineeships and voluntary work.  They also provide help with CV writing, application forms, travel training, interviews and support in the work place.

Elevate is the place for 16-24 year olds in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead to get help, advice and support on employment, work experience, volunteering and mentoring.

Grow our own provides support, advice, guidance and training to local residents who want to find employment in their home area.  They support people with moderate learning difficulties.

Job Centre Plus - The Disability Employment Advisor at Job Centre Plus can assist people with a disability or health condition to find work or training.

Braywick Nurseries offer volunteering and training to people with disabilities and support needs. They have an employment skills programme looking at learning new skills for future employment.

If you are eligible for Adult Social Care Support, you may receive help with employment advice through the Community Team for People with Learning Disabilities (CTPLD) or the Adult Autism Specialist Service.


National organisations to support you to get a job 


National Careers Service provides information, advice and guidance to help you make decisions on learning, training and work opportunities.

Shaw Trust is a national charity which supports disabled and disadvantaged people to prepare for work, find jobs and live more independently.

Leonard Cheshire Disability charity helps disabled people to find work including the Change100 internship programme for disabled students and graduates.

The National Autistic Society has information and support for people with Autism who are looking for employment.

Mencap run services to enable people with a learning disability to develop the skills they need for the workplace.

Whizz-Kidz  offer a range of work placements and work skills days designed for young wheelchair users aged 16-25.

Remploy is a provider of specialist employment services for disabled people and those with complex needs.

Even Break is a not for profit organisation helping disabled jobseekers to find work.

Employability is a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to assisting students and graduates with all disabilities into employment.

The Prince's Trust supports young people ged 13-30 who are unemployed, as well as those who are struggling at school and are at risk of exclusion.




Volunteering is about giving your time to help other people. You don't get paid but you do get the chance to use your talents, develop new skills and make a real difference to other people's lives as well as your own.   Sometimes the experience and skills you gain through voluntary work can help you when you are looking for paid work.  

Click on the blue links below to find out more..

The Ways into Work service can help young people with disabilities aged 18+ to get voluntary work.

Windsor, Ascot and Maidenhead Community Database helps local people to get involved with local community projects.

The Leonard Cheshire Disability charity Can Do Project provides volunteer opportunities for people with disabilities.

Vinspired is an independent charity dedicated to helping young people to volunteer.

You can find more services who can help you with volunteering in the employment and volunteering section.


Financial help and other support 


People with learning difficulties or disabilities can get financial help and support when you are looking for work or once you are employed.   These include:

  • Access to Work - this can include money towards a Support Worker, for the cost of equipment or travelling to work.
  • Work Choice - to help you find a job and get support when you start work including building your confidence and interview coaching
  • The Work Programme helps people who claim out of work benefits to look for and stay in work
  • Specialist Employment Support - provides mentoring and training to help you into work if you’re disabled and can’t use other employment programmes.
  • Employment and Support Allowance - can be offered to young people aged 16 plus whose illness or disability impacts on their ability to work. It may include financial support or personalised help.

You can ask the Disability Employment Adviser at Job Centre Plus about how to access this support.  

Further information about looking for work if you are disabled is available from the website.

The website also has information about independent benefits calculators to help you find out what benefits you could get, how to claim and how your benefits will be affected if you start work.



Your employment rights 


If you’re disabled you have the same rights as other workers. Under the Equality Act 2010 you are entitled to fair treatment when it comes to recruitment, promotion and pay. It also means that employers must make their workplaces accessible to you by making ‘reasonable adjustments’.  You can read more about this on the website

When you’re looking for work, look for the ‘positive about disabled people’ symbol (with 2 ticks) on adverts and application forms.  The symbol means the employer is committed to employing disabled people.  If a job advert displays the symbol, you’ll be guaranteed an interview if you meet the basic conditions for the job.


Young people's stories of finding work 


You can read about other young people's experiences of finding work by clicking on some of the links below..

Ways into Work

Preparing for Adulthood website

Mencap website