University supports Gary to gain valuable work experience

We have teamed up with grounds staff at the University of Northampton to offer our service users the opportunity to gain valuable work experience in the community.

1st Degree Facilities, the company which maintains the University estate, has offered work placements for service users via our employment support service.

Gary, who has vast experience in gardening and horticulture, undertook the first placement on campus, where he spent eight weeks working with the ground staff.

He said: “I’ve been going to Workbridge for eight years now, and I have enjoyed getting my hands dirty at the Workbridge garden centre. This placement was great; I’ve been pruning plants, collecting the leaves and helping in the University allotment.

"It was great opportunity for me, and I hope it leads to other things.”

John Howes, Grounds Supervisor for 1st Degree Facilities, said: “We were only too happy to work with St Andrew’s and Workbridge to offer its users the chance to work alongside our team.

“We’ve been really impressed with Gary’s horticultural knowledge, and he’s proving himself to be a fantastic asset to our team. Hopefully the experience he picks up working with us will help him to find employment.”

Employment opportunities for our service users

Being employed is important to all of us; it provides us with an income to afford to live independently, offers important social networks, a routine, and a sense of pride.

People with disabilities and mental health conditions continue to face complex barriers in to employment, including stigma and discrimination. However, there is a growing awareness and evidence to suggest that vulnerable people who want to work can be supported in to securing and maintaining meaningful employment.

Collaborative working is essential to the success of Workbridge employment support. As our service users progress through the vocational pathway and begin to reach their full potential, we offer tailored one-to-one employment support.

Do you own or work for a business that could offer employment opportunities or advice to our service users? Please get in touch with us - we'd love to hear from you.

Click here for more information about how you could partner with us to support our service users


Pictured left to right: Darren and Angie from the Grounds team, with Gary (third) and John Howes (fourth).