Preparing for Adulthood

Work and employment

Work and Employment


Supported Internship - Are you 17 to 24 years old and looking for paid work?

WorkStart, a package of employment courses at Orchard Hill College has partnered with London Borough of Sutton to offer a Supported Internship.

Programme starting September 2021. 

Places are limited - find out more here (PDF, 101.32KB)


Mencap:  Supported Internship programme, Interns and Outcomes (external link).

To be eligible, you will need to:

  • want to work
  • ideally had some prior work experience
  • be 16-24
  • have an Education, Health and Care Plan

The aim of Interns and Outcomes is to help progress each intern towards and ideally into work. The programme is the equivalent of a college course so runs from September to July each year and includes a minimum of 300 hours of work experience. Learn more about Mencap: Supported Internships (PDF, 19.46MB)

A downloadable brochure can be found here (PDF, 2944KB).

A presentation can be found here (PPTX, 95.6MB).

Watch Patrick’s story here (external link).


Nickel Support Community Interest Company

Nickel support is a  not-for-profit community interest organisation which  supports adults (16+) with learning disabilities by offering real life opportunities. This could be to improve work skills, or support with life skill development. They offer people the chance to get involved with social enterprises managed and run by the trainees with learning disabilities who access the service. 

Choice Support - Sutton supported employment (external link)

Choice Support work with the London Borough of Sutton to support people with autism, learning disabilities, mental health needs, physical disabilities and sensory impairments to gain and keep paid employment. This may mean paid work, work experience or voluntary work.

TIN - Transition Information Network (external link)

The Transition Information Network (TIN) is an alliance of organisations and individuals who come together with a common aim: to improve the experience of disabled young people’s transition to adulthood. TIN is a source of information and good practice standards for disabled young people, families and professionals.

Help and support to find and stay in work (external link)

This guidance provides links to websites that help young disabled people find and stay in work. It is aimed at young disabled people, their parents/carers and the professionals who work with them. 

Looking for work if you're disabled (external link)

Government website for advice on looking for work and applying for a job if you are disabled.

Access to Work ( external link)

An Access to Work grant can pay for practical support, if you have a disability, health or mental health condition, to help you: start working, stay in work, move into self-employment or start a business.  The grant is not for business start-up costs. How much you get depends on your circumstances. The money doesn’t have to be paid back and will not affect your other benefits

To check eligibility and how to apply visit the Job Help website.


WorkFit (external link)

Downs Syndrome Association guidance to looking for work experience, supported apprenticeships, paid employment and volunteering.

CareTrade (external link)

A multi-award winning charity providing innovative opportunities for Londoners with autism to transition from school/college towards and into employment.

Employment is everyone's business (external link) 

As part of the project, Employment is Everyone's Business (EEB), the National Development Team for Inclusion (NDTi) and the British Association for Supported Employment (BASE) have been working with a number of schools, colleges, young people and employers to identify ways in which professionals can work together to support young people into employment. 

They have produced three resources:

Prince's Trust (external link)

If you’re unemployed and between 16 and 25, you can meet new people, gain new skills and train on our Team programme.

How it works : Join Team, our 12-week personal development programme, for the chance to gain new skills, take a qualification and meet new people. When you come on board, you’ll be challenged to:

  • Take on your own group community project, making a positive difference to the place where you live
  • Take part in an action packed residential trip
  • Get two weeks’ work experience in something you’re interested in
  • Develop your English and Maths skills 

As part of the course, we also spend some time developing your interview and CV skills to ensure your confidence is sky-high for when taking the next step.

Not sure whether to dive right in? It’s completely free and won’t affect your Jobseeker’s Allowance.

Email: / Call: 07827 851918

Scope: Career Pathways (external link)

Scope are a disability equality charity who have recently launched a new service called Career Pathways, for young disabled aged 16-25 who would like some information and advice around careers.

Project SEARCH (external link)

The Project SEARCH programme is a 9 month long training and employment opportunity for adults aged 18-24 with a learning disability, which takes place entirely at the St George's Hospital site. Project SEARCH provides real life work experience combined with training in employability and independent living skills, as well as formulating a CV, to help young people to make successful transitions from school to productive adult life. The goal for each student is competitive employment somewhere in the community using the skills they have acquired at St George's. 

If you would like to hear more about Project SEARCH, please contact: 

Annie Brine, Project SEARCH Co-ordinator:

Catherine Kiernan, Job Coach with Action on Disability:

Beth Madigan:

Amy Vinall:

OR, watch a video about Project Search (external link). 

Steps into Work (external link)

Steps into Work is a 3 way partnership between TFL, Mencap and Barnet & Southgate College that provides work experience for adults with mild to moderate learning disabilities and/or on the autism spectrum.

Workstart (external link)

Workstart is a package of courses from Orchard Hill College to give you the opportunity to gain work experience and qualifications. You will be able to work one-to-one with Job Coaches to get you on track to achieving your ambitions. 

The Change Foundation (external link)

The Change Foundation runs programmes designed and delivered by young people with lived expereince, tackling issues relevant to young people today.

London Futures (external link)

London Futures is an employability programme for young Londoners with learning disabilities and mental health problems, facing social isolation and loneliness. Using support and specialised mentoring, these young Londoners unite to compete in employability challenges to improve their career aspirations and become more integrated in their communities. 

The programme is for young adults, 18-25 years old. 

Sessions are every Monday (excluding school holidays and bank holidays), from 6.30PM-8PM.

The venue is: The Change Foundation, The Cricket Centre, Plough Lane, Wallington, SM6 8JQ

Contact Ryan Jones on : 07824 589517 /

Sutton and District Training (external link)

Sutton District Training provide flexible training which develops the skills and confidence of adults and young people. 

Call: 020 8687 5225


Positive Directions (Groundwork) (external link)

Positive Directions is a skills training programme for young people living in South London (Croydon, Merton, Richmond, Sutton or Kingston) who are not currently in employment, education or training and aged 16-24. They can support you by providing training in industry-specific skills, helping you to stand out and succeed. 

If you or someone you know would like to benefit from this free training and support, please contact / 075937 61897

Better Working Futures (external link)

Better Working Futures (also known as the Work and Health Programme) gives people who face additional barriers to starting work the best support available.

Read the Better Working Futures brochure.

Sign up to Better Working Futures. 




21/10/2020, 11:32:08