Get charity find paid work for 350 people in five years
ENTRY into paid work for the disabled and disadvantaged has increased four-fold since the Guernsey Employment Trust (Get) took the reins nearly five years ago.
Previously supported employment was provided by Interwork as part of the States Adult Disability Service, but, despite their best endeavours, it was only able to secure on average 17 paid jobs per year.
Get has just entered its 350th client into paid work.
‘Reaching our 350th paid outcome is a significant milestone for us which the previous States-run service would have taken 20 years to achieve,’ said Get’s chief executive, Nikki Ioannou-Droushiotis.
‘But it’s not all about hard numbers.
‘Although our main aim is to support disabled people with their employment the benefits of our support are often far-reaching, providing a positive impact on welfare benefits, less reliance on other statutory services and an increase in self-esteem, confidence and motivation to name but a few.’
Get’s services are more accessible and available to a wider group of disabled and disadvantaged people resulting in a greater number of people being supported to prepare for, find and maintain employment, whilst costing the States, and ultimately the tax payer, substantially less.
Mrs Ioannou-Droushiotis continued: ‘A large part of our success is down to our approach of working closely with business to negotiate and support work opportunities for our clients.
‘We believe that Get has two customers – disabled people and business – and that it is imperative to understand the needs of both to get the right match.’
Get is committed to supporting the business community to develop more inclusive practices.
It has produced a good practice guide and an employers’ disability charter, and bring these to life in free interactive training sessions.
Some 35 organisations have signed up to the charter so far, demonstrating their commitment and, as a result, Get has witnessed noticeable improvements in workplace practices and attitudes.
Guernsey Electricity’s Chris Watkin said: ‘The Guernsey Employment Trust is invaluable to our local community in creating job opportunities for disabled people and assisting candidates to prepare for, find, and maintain work in Guernsey.
‘The charity also provides employers with an incredible pool of talent which we have experienced first-hand.
‘We are proud to be a member of the Employers’ Disability Charter and would encourage other local businesses to sign up or find out more.’