Skip to content

Supported Employment, Internships and Work

Supported Internships

Supported Internships are based primarily at employer’s premises with on the job training and support. The most important requirement of a Supported Internship is that the young person wants to and is ready to work, but may need extra support to do this.

Blueberry Academy

As part of the personalised learning offer at Blueberry Academy, students showing aspiration and commitment to paid employment can progress onto a Supported Internship. A Supported Internship programme consists of a minimum of 2 days per week in the workplace with functional skills and employability offered alongside.

Interns are supported by a job coach, and support is gradually reduced as the intern becomes more independent at their tasks and duties. Blueberry works with a range of employers within the city and has delivered successful internships opportunities at York Hospital, York St John University, Joseph Rowntree Housing Trust, Ambiente Restaurant and Waitrose. The Blueberry information, advice and guidance team looks at the full range of needs a person has and supports young people to explore employment options either with the placement provider or to apply for other opportunities which match their skills and abilities.

Project Choice

A one year programme for students with an EHCP. A placement is organised across the week with one day reserved for employability and functional skills. There is the possibility of a different placement each term.

Some of the placements are in an NHS setting and some are in the community. Young people are allocated a workplace mentor along with the coordinator. They won’t get paid but will develop useful work related skills and be more ready to move into paid work at the end of the programme.


United Response

Usually a two year programme. The first year involves working in Café West to learn about employment skills such as rules and responsibilities, health and safety, working in a team and communication. The second year is with an employer elsewhere in York related to what the young person wants to do. For example retail, hospitality, catering. Both years would include focused employability sessions and functional skills – either 1:1 work or small groups.



Prospects offer supported internships in a number of vocational areas. It is only for those who have an EHCP and is usually one year in duration. The programme is personalised for each learner with the possibility of up to 3 bespoke placements in particular areas of interest. Employability sessions are offered along with functional skills or other qualifications to sit alongside work placements. Prospects offer support to look for paid work towards the end of the programme. 


Supported Employment

This is a possible option for young people who have left education and are ready to work. United Response is the main provider in York.

Supported Employment is designed to support adults with learning disabilities, autism, physical disabilities or people with mental health conditions, people with very little or no experience of work, people who want tailored support to access and stay in work. In order to be eligible the young person needs to be working with Adult Social Care and a referral can be made by a social worker or specialist careers adviser. Alternatively a referral can be made by a work coach or disability employment adviser at a job centre. People accessing the service are assigned a job coach. A job coach is like a support worker but is focused on supporting people into work and in work. The core role of a job coach is to provide person-centred support, to enable people to learn, develop and to maintain a job.


A programme for young people aged 15-19 or from 19- 25 with additional needs who are not in education, employment or training (NEET) or at risk of this in the future. It aims to
create career pathways through formal and informal learning, employability skills and work experience. There is intensive and individually tailored support from a key worker to help young people move into an apprenticeship, work or education through small groups or 1-2-1.

The course is at Aspire-igen on Colliergate (York town centre). It is a rolling programme so you can usually join at any time during the year.

Future Goals

Future Goals is a programme for 15 to 24 year olds who are unsure about their next steps. They can help young people to find a progression opportunity that is right for them, for
example employment, an Apprenticeship or Further Education. They offer tailored one to one support and build employability skills and confidence. Practical help includes CV writing, interview preparation and work tasters. There are no entry requirements and they work with people with few, or no qualifications or young people who have lots of qualifications. 

Action towards Inclusion

Action towards Inclusion provides support for adults over 18 with additional needs. Local charities and voluntary organisations work together to help those most distant from work, training and volunteering by offering flexible support to help overcome physical, psychological, financial and skills-related barriers and progress towards employment, training, education and job-search. Everyone on the project has a key worker.

In York partners include York Mind, St Nicholas Fields, York Learning, Kyra and Autism Plus.


Supported Work Places

There are lots of different work opportunities for young people and adults with special educational needs and disabilities.

Supported work environments enable young people and adults to develop skills such as time management, independence and the opportunity to learn new skills and experiences.

Brunswick Organic Nursery

Brunswick Organic Nursery is a registered charity that provides supported work for adults who have learning disabilities.

Their aim is to put people with learning difficulties at the heart of all that they do. They hope to provide good experiences of purposeful, productive work opportunities to all their service users.

Places at Brunswick

If you or someone you know in interested in gaining a place at Brunswick contact Helen and Maja- Workers Support Managers- on 01904 701869 or by completing the forms available to access on their website (or by clicking here)

From here Helen and Maja will invite you to Brunswick for a visit and for you to be able to see all of the different jobs available at Brunswick. Next, if you liked it, you will be asked to attend a taster day giving you the opportunity to try working at Brunswick and see which job you prefer. Then if you enjoyed your taster day, and there is space available, you will be offered a trail place. A trail place typically lasts 6 weeks  but can be extended if you need it. However if there is no places at that given time within the job of your choice your details will be taken and you will be contacted when space becomes available.

From here if you have enjoyed the trail period and Brunswick think you are well suited to the job you will be offered a permanent place at Brunswick.

Brunswick covers a number of different areas including; crafts, community work, cooking, gardening, growing, shop work and  woodwork.

They also have their social group called Chilli BON BON. This is a dance and drama group formed through Brunswick and its workers. They use sound, music, movement, film, dance, silence, tears and laughter to develop work. All of the skills developed through this helps the young people and adults to express and connect with others, actively participate in 'movements' embracing and encouraging change and develop new ways of expression.


Yorkcraft is part of the City of York Council Work Choice Programme providing employment opportunities for people with disabilities.

You can use the service if you:
- have a disability and face barriers to finding and keeping employment
- long-term unemployment
- prepared to work for six months

To access this service you must contact Jobcentre Plus who would then refer you to Shaw Trust

There are a range of different job opportunities such as working in workshops, printing, packing, sorting etc. Yorkcraft also run a range of courses to help build skills needed for the work place.

They also have links with other public, private and voluntary organisations to arrange supported placements for jobs outside the factory


Work and Health Programme (GOV)

 This programme provides support to help people find and also keep a job. it runs on a voluntary basis

The government scheme gives you access to personal support with:

  • Identifying your employment needs
  • Match your skills to work that’s available
  • Put you in touch with employers
  • Find long-term employment
  • Get training to help you find work
  • Manage health problems to reduce their impact


Live in England or Wales and you are disabled, out of work and have claimed unemployment benefits for 24 months, a carer or former carer. You do not have to be getting benefits to apply.

Speak to your work coach for more help and information regarding the Work and Health Programme


Access Towards Inclusion

As an employability programme, ATI provides hundreds of fantastic outcomes for its participants: employment, training and job searching.

Better Connect lead on ATI to help and fund our partners and participants to achieve these targets, but also to promote key social goals for participants including improved mental health and financial wellbeing.

Our mission is building a happier and more inclusive Yorkshire.



Apprenticeships are work-based learning programmes where people earn a wage and gain on-the-job experience and skills that lead to nationally recognised qualifications. There are currently over 200 different apprenticeships available in York.

Where can an apprenticeship lead?

Apprenticeships can lead to progression and promotion in employment or to further study. It is possible to progress through the apprenticeship levels to enter higher education. If you want to go on to university you will find that many higher education institutions will value your apprenticeship qualification and will offer you a place on a foundation degree or other higher level qualifications.

What types of qualifications will I get?

Apprenticeships can be studied at three different levels: Intermediate, Advanced and Higher. Usually, an apprenticeship takes between one and four years to complete, depending on the level and framework. As a guide, an intermediate apprenticeship usually takes a minimum of 12 months.

Intermediate: This is equivalent to 5 GCSE passes. Apprentices work towards work-based learning qualifications such as NVQ Level 2, Key Skills and, in most cases, a relevant knowledge-based qualification such as a BTEC.

Advanced: This is equivalent to 2 A-level passes. Apprentices work towards qualifications such as NVQ Level 3, Key Skills and a knowledge-based qualification such as a BTEC. To start this programme, you should ideally have 5 GCSEs at grade A*-C, or have already completed an Intermediate Apprenticeship.

Higher: This level leads to NVQ Level 4 and above or a foundation degree. Apprentices work towards qualifications such as NVQ Level 4 and, in some cases, a knowledge-based qualification such as a foundation degree.

What types of job opportunities are there in York?

Below is a list of current vacancies for apprenticeships in York.

Apprenticeship Graduation

Every year, people who have successfully completed their apprenticeship are invited to a graduation celebration evening at York Minster, to recognise the hard work they have put in and present awards to the very best of them.

Where can I find out more information?

York Learning has further information about apprenticeships in York. You can join up to their Apprenticeship Talent Pool and sign up to their mailing list, to receive the latest apprenticeship vacancies in York.

You can also find out more information about apprenticeships by visiting the Apprenticeship website or call them on 08000 150 600.



A Traineeship is an education and training programme with work experience that is focused on giving young people the skills and experience that employers are looking for.

Why do a Traineeship?

A Traineeship can help young people gain the essential work preparation training, maths and English and work experience needed to get an Apprenticeship or other job when they leave school.

Work preparation training and work experience will put the young person in a better position to compete for an Apprenticeship or other job. At the end of the work experience placement your child will get a reference and an exit interview – or a job interview if a role becomes available – with the company.

How long are Traineeships?

Traineeships will last anything from six weeks to a maximum of six months with the content tailored to the needs of the individual.

What will I learn whilst doing a Traineeship?

Work preparation training which ensures young people are ready and have confidence to take the first step in their career, such as an Apprenticeship.

Maths and English support to ensure the young person has the literacy and numeracy skills needed for the workplace.

Meaningful work experience which provides insight and experience of the world of work.

Who can do a taineeship?

  • Traineeships are an ideal opportunity for young people who are motivated to get a job but who lack the skills and experience that employers are looking for.
  • Young people who have been applying unsuccessfully for Apprenticeship vacancies due to a lack of skills or experience can be good candidates for a Traineeship.

Where can I find more information about Traineeships?

The National Apprenticeship Service has further information about Traineeships and apprenticeships.



What is a Volunteer?

A volunteer is someone who does unpaid work or activities within the community.

Why volunteer?

Volunteering is a great way to meet new people, make new friends and learn new skills.

What types of activities could I do as a Volunteer?
As a volunteer you could work with children, young people, the elderly, people with disabilities, nature, animals, or IT. You might be on a committee, work in a shop, design a website or co-ordinate an event. You can use or develop your skills in befriending, finance, DIY, gardening, listening, conservation, arts and crafts and much more.


How do I find out more?

City of York Council offer volunteering opportunities in a range of areas including working with young people, the environment and health.

York CVS provides information about becoming a volunteer. If you're not sure what you would like to do, contact York CVS to discuss your skills and your interests. is a national website for people who are interested in volunteering. There is more information about volunteering and what support is available for volunteers who have special educational needs or disabilities online.