Making a difference to our young people

Project Choice a scheme which helps young people with a Learning Disability find employment has held a graduation ceremony for its students.

The NTW Training Academy which is part of Northumberland, Tyne and Wear NHS Foundation Trust (NTW) a provider of mental health and disability services has been hosting an exciting programme to help local young people get work ready.

It has been an amazing experience seeing the student flourish, become confident and looking forward to gaining either employment or further training.  As a team we have learnt so much from our students, it has been a huge learning curve for everyone.  It’s great seeing them enjoying working and recognising all their new skills.

Gayl KeddieArea Manager for Project Choice North and South of Tyne

Project Choice is an initiative that offers young people with a learning difficulty and or autism the opportunity to learn new skills in a real work environment. It gives them the chance to gain experience of what it is like to be an employee, it allows them to develop and understand their skills and strengths.

After a year of placements and college where the students spend time at work and studying, 24 students from the north and south of our region collected their certificates in front of friends and family.

All the students have been supported on their placements by a group of passionate, committed mentors within NTW, NTW Solutions and the wider community.

One student said: “It’s been great understanding a working life, setting my alarm clock and getting up in time for work has been good. I’ve enjoyed meeting different people and my confidence has grown.”

Work is already underway recruiting for next year’s academic year and getting ready to support more young people into active employment.  If you would like to be part of this exciting project please contact Gayl Keddie gayl.keddie@ntw.nhs.uk or Simone Simpson simone.simpson@ntw.nhs.uk .