Real Opportunities Project Work Experience

Bluestone helps provide “real opportunities” to four young people

Four young people with learning difficulties have been given the opportunity to develop their independence thanks to Bluestone National Park Resort through the Real Opportunities Project.

Bluestone, the luxury short break destination near Narberth, Pembrokeshire, worked with the charity Mencap to provide work placements at a number of outlets within the resort, helping the youngsters adapt to working life.

The Real Opportunities Project aims to promote young people’s independence by preparing them for their future.

Work experience is an important part of the transition and the four youngsters – Ben, Liam, Max and Ted worked in areas including the bakery in, retail, guest services, as well as at the Blue Lagoon water park as a lifeguard.

“We have a wide range of roles at Bluestone and we were pleased to be working with the four young people to offer them an opportunity to carry out jobs that they might not otherwise have a chance to undertake. Undertaking this work experience in a supported environment is confidence building for the participants and provides a real hands on insight into the working world” said Melanie Thompson, Training and Development Manager at Bluestone.

“The four participants took to their area of responsibility very well and soon got to grips with their responsibilities. Our staff and managers were very impressed and we hope it has given them all an opportunity to develop their skills as they embark on an independent life and they all seemed to enjoy themselves too.”

The Real Opportunities Project works with young people aged between 14 and 19 years of age with learning disabilities, severe and complex needs and autistic spectrum disorder to help them become as independent as possible in their adult lives.

“It is vitally important for young people like Ben, Liam, Max & Ted to gain experience in a working environment, it develops their social and cognitive skills, which is vital for independence” said Clive Lawrence of Mencap.

“We were very pleased to work with Bluestone to provide roles that helped each of the participants to understand what employment is about, the responsibilities they could be given and the expectations an employer would have in them. They thoroughly enjoyed it and it’s helped them immensely.”

You can find out more about the Real Opportunities Project at http://www.realopportunities.org.uk/ 

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