Employment and careers
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How do I get my lad into a proper job?

herosmumherosmum Member Posts: 3 Listener
Hello. I am a 70 year old widow and have a 28 year old son with some physical and developmental problems. He is intelligent but  doesn't like socialising, won't join any clubs etc,   is very shy so has no social circle apart from our small family. Despite his difficulties he managed to get a BSc via the Open University  and it would be a crime not to use his knowledge  in paid employment. He qualified for minimum PIP but will obviously need a better income when I die to be able to stay in our home .  Question is - is there a dedicated disability employment agency that could help ? how do we go about matching him to a job without endangering his benefits if we can't find a job to suit him ? I am so worried about his future but can't motivate him to make an effort to change his life.
I'd be glad to hear experiences from anybody else who has found themselves in the same position. especially if they had a successful outcome.

Replies

  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,373 Disability Gamechanger
    Hello @herosmum

    There are groups which help disabled people to find work, if you can say what part of the country you are in it would help to find one close to you. Also what type of work your son would be interested in.

    Support to Work: this is a new service by Scope, details can be found at https://www.scope.org.uk/support/services/employment/support-work

    Learning Disability Week: this is a Mencap program to help those with learning disabilities to get experience in the work place. While the focus is on a particular week in the year it is not restricted to this period, or a week. The team I work with at work have taken on someone the last five years for three weeks. While not a full time or even paid work it is a good opportunity for people to see what it is like in a working environment and we have found their confidence grows in that period.

    Your son could assumedly ask to be referred to one of the specialist organisations that help disabled people back to work. This will normally include time looking for work, workshops to help with any barriers such as confidence, help with CV etc.

    Volunteering, I know many charity shops are looking for volunteers, he would usually work with a small team and working in the back of shop would help him to build a relationship with staff and get into a work routine. There are other volunteering opportunities, but it sounds like your son would benefit from working with a small and understanding team.

    There are specialist employment agencies which help those who have degrees, especially if recently gained, but from what you have said it sounds like he will struggle with one of these type of jobs and competition can be fierce.


    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • herosmumherosmum Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Thank you for your fast reply. We are in Rainhill Merseyside.
  • herosmumherosmum Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Sorry I only half replied, his degree covered mostly environmental issues and geology. so anything related to those. As a student he did a short work experience with local park rangers, loved it and was gutted when there were no openings there.
  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,373 Disability Gamechanger
    @herosmum wow well done your son, and I agree that it would be a shame for his learning to go to waste.

    To be honest I have little idea of how to advise you and your son.

    The best advice is with his qualifications to throw the net as wide as possible. Local and national government vacancies are obvious, but also some of the local and national conservation charities such as National Trust, RSPB, English waterways. 

    A good site to regularly visit would be https://www.jobsgopublic.com as this concentrates on jobs from local government, NGOs, charities etc.

    I don't know what your son's attitude to volunteering is while he is looking for work, but the right volunteering opportunity would help with his cv and show a commitment to wanting to work within that type of environment, with an organisation which could potentially employ him would be better, but that is his choice.

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • Beth368Beth368 Member Posts: 3 Listener
    Our lad is in a similar position but without the qualifications, borderline LD,  years of no work, totally demoralised but so wants a job. Unfortunately his areas of interest/expertise are not compatable with helping him get employment. He is not motivated or supported enough by his external support to succeed. Any suggestions would be welcome.
  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,373 Disability Gamechanger
    Hi @Beth368 there are a number of issues but none which are insurmountable.

    I might be wrong but I would suspect that your son would have a number of issues which would make moving into work difficult for him, lack of experience and being demoralised you have mentioned, but also his confidence and most people with Aspergers are uncomfortable with new people. Also they tend to be routine motivated and this can be difficult after being unemployed after a number of years.

    I am a bit like a broken record on this, but would your son be willing to do some volunteering work? Ideally it would be with a small team that could encourage him and help him develop at a pace he is comfortable with. Also it would help if they are able to offer him the opportunity to do an NVQ and support him in this.

    An NVQ is work orientated, and some people find these a good way to gain qualifications that can help them to find paid work. Volunteering would give him a current work related reference and help to raise his moral. 

    I know charities are an excellent source for this type of volunteering opportunities.  You can find an example of the sort of support your son could find at https://www.scope.org.uk/volunteering/faq#7-time

    There are a number of national retail outlets which are disability friendly, including Asda, Tesco etc. My daughter volunteered in a Scope shop when she was at university and now works for M&S, she also has Aspergers.

    Another advantage to volunteering  is it will give your son a chance to try something and see if he enjoys it without risking his benefits. You can find out more about volunteering and benefits at https://www.ncvo.org.uk/ncvo-volunteering/volunteering-and-benefits

    If volunteering in a shop is not something your son would like to consider then contacting your local volunteer centre may give him some other ideas. You can find your local volunteer centre at https://www.ncvo.org.uk/ncvo-volunteering/find-a-volunteer-centre

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

  • GeoarkGeoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,373 Disability Gamechanger
    @Beth368 sorry for the second post but did not want to make the other one too long.

    If your son does not want to do voluntary work there are some job types that your son may be able to do that lack of experience or qualifications would not necessarily be a huge disadvantage.

    Warehouses offer a range of jobs that are basic, though some level of literacey would be  needed, sorry no assumptions being made just making it clear. These can range from picking, packing, shelf filling, loading and unloading vehicles. A certain amount of self awareness and health and safety are essential. Working in a large warehouse with forklifts moving backwards and forwards is probably not a good idea if a person has little awareness of the dangers.

    There are paid jobs in shops that are disability friendly, I would suggest trying the larger chains though. These are likely to offer a range of roles which might suit your son better. Just from talking to people I know with disabilitie smaller stores can be a nightmare for those with disabilities.

    Councils can be a good source of manual jobs, though they can be competitive. 

    One obvious route into work your son might want to consider is an apprenticeship. 

    As an individual I stood alone.
    As a member of a group I did things.
    As part of a community I helped to create change!

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