The Hub at Workaid, was set up six years ago with the main purpose to provide supported work experience to people with learning disabilities, usually college leavers. Barbara heard about the Hub through a volunteer where she worked in social care and was told that Workaid was looking for people to help with its set up.
Barbara trained in social care with a NVQ3, BA Hons and although being experienced in working with vulnerable adults including those with learning disabilities she still needed to learn the difference between a socket and a sprocket! So the technical side had to be learnt on the job but it is never to late to learn something new. Barbara has said that she is eternally grateful to the patient people who taught her these skills as she can in turn pass on this knowledge to her attendees.
Sandy and Chif were our first attendees and we have up to 9 placements over two days – on Mondays and Tuesdays. The period of time people come through the Hub can vary from maybe a few weeks or potentially a lot longer. Over the years three different students from Heritage House School have joined us in the Hub which has resulted in Heritage House recently setting up their own Hub and Barbara’s team will get the work ready for the Heritage House staff to take back to school.
So that everyone can be given individual attention to ensure that their needs can be met Barbara and the team will only work with a few clients at a time. Coming to the Hub allows them to tackle a variety of jobs from sorting and cleaning tools to laminating and mailshots. No job is too small. Sue in sewing machines provides important and valuable work, under strict and patient supervision, in helping attendees to learn to clean and service the machines.
The Workaid Hub has helped all clients/attendees to gain confidence, develop soft skills in communication, how to behave at work, and work together as a team. The feedback from parents and carers has been very positive and they can see a difference in the attendees who have become more self-assured through working in the Hub. We have a really happy team spirit and the enjoyment of a job well done.