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Skills for Independence

Active Prospects offers a range of services that support people with learning disabilities, mental and physical health needs, to gain the skills and self-confidence they need to live independent and rewarding lives, that see them actively participating in their local community.

We support people to gain practical skills, boost confidence, raise aspirations, make friends and improve wellbeing.

In September 2017, we will launch a new and innovative Supported Internship Programme that will offer young people with learning disabilities the opportunity for practical work experience and personal development. The project, funded by Surrey County Council’s SEND Enterprise Programme, will be launched in partnership with East Surrey College. Towards the end of the one year programme, interns will be supported to find progression opportunities, such as further training, volunteering or paid work, including jobs within Active Prospects.

We aim to deliver a 12-week Employability Programme that will offer intensive support for up to 12 people with a range of support needs, to gain skills to prepare them for work and independence. Participants will receive one-to-one, person-centred support to help them achieve outcomes that are important to them, as well as attending group sessions for skills development. They will learn skills such as travelling independently, team-working, independent living skills, IT skills and so on. Group sessions will foster peer-to-peer support which will be maintained through social media and events, following the course.

Later in 2017, facilitated by a change of Head Office location, we will launch a range of services to help people on a pathway towards paid employment and independence. This will centre around a number of Social Enterprises, such as a Café, Car Wash, Animal Care, Arts and Crafts or Garden Centre, that will allow people to put their skills into practise within a real-life work environment. Having something productive to do with their day and chance to mix socially with others helps people with learning disabilities or mental health needs feel less isolated. Challenging themselves to try new things and the satisfaction of achievement raises people’s views of what they can achieve, that acts as a catalyst for greater independence.

Our new Active Wellbeing strategy will support people with mental health needs through a range of recovery and wellbeing services delivered in accessible, central venues. We are recruiting a new specialist team to support the 26 people with mental health needs living in our own supported housing as well as reaching out to others living locally.