Duncan Selbie, Chief Executive of Public Health England, congratulated the graduates and handed out certificates at the ceremony in Colindale, in front of an audience of family members and programme partners.
Project SEARCH began in 1996 and now runs in 48 organisations in the UK, including at Public Health England in Colindale, where the scheme is in its first year. It accommodates ten students aged 18-24, with the course split into three ten-week work placements there. The Foundation provides two job coaches, who work with local organisations to help individuals access and apply for employment opportunities.
The programme received worthy recognition at Public Health England’s second Diversity and Staff Inclusion Awards held at the House of Lords in May 2017, gaining nominations for the Manager of the Year Award and the Partnership Award.
The average employment rate for individuals aged 18–24 with a learning disability in the UK is just 7%. That figure increases to 65% for those that have been through Project SEARCH programmes.
Project SEARCH at Public Health England is delivered in partnership with the Tottenham Hotspur Foundation, Barnet and Southgate College, Barnet Council and the West London Alliance.
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