Building better career pathways for people with intellectual disabilities

An initiative by

Kilmarnock Enterprises Trust

in Partnership with EPIT

18 June 2024

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Kilmarnock's training program supports school leavers with intellectual disabilities by providing on-the-job experience and essential skill development (time management, teamwork, communication) in a safe environment. Partnering with Te Pukenga, they're creating NZQA-accredited training (Level 1 & 2) in areas like numeracy, literacy, and job readiness (CV prep, interviewing) to support participants to transition smoothly into mainstream employment.

The drive behind this initiative

The current societal model for transitioning school leavers with disabilities into employment is disjointed and siloed. It is focused on ticking boxes and not incentivised to go beyond the boundaries that the service is measured and funded to deliver. There is limited focus on training and supporting businesses to be ‘employer ready’, which puts transition at risk of not being successful.

Approach to change

A systems thinking approach is used to understand and enable solutions to the inequities faced by school leavers with intellectual disabilities. This includes mapping the system, identifying feedback loops and leverage points, designing interventions and evaluating impact. By understanding the interconnectedness of these factors, we can identify the root causes of the problem and develop solutions that address them.

Impact for Equity

By providing a holistic and supportive approach to employment, the programme can help to level the playing field for individuals with intellectual disability or neurodiversity and give them the opportunity to succeed in the workplace.

1. Increased access to employment

The programme provides a one-stop shop for individuals with intellectual disability or neurodiversity to access the support they need to find and keep jobs. This will help to increase their access to employment and reduce the inequities that they face.

2. Improved job skills

The programme provides individuals with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the workplace. This includes both work-related skills, such as time management and teamwork, and life skills, such as communication and resilience.

3. Increased confidence and self-esteem

The programme provides individuals with the support they need to build their confidence and self-esteem. This will help them to feel more capable and prepared to succeed in the workplace.

4. Reduced reliance on government benefits

The programme can help individuals with intellectual disability or neurodiversity to find and keep jobs, which can reduce their reliance on government benefits. This can have a positive impact on their financial security and well-being.

5. Increased social inclusion

The programme can help individuals with intellectual disability or neurodiversity to connect with others and build relationships. This can help them to feel more included and accepted in society.

Learnings & Outputs

About

Kilmarnock Enterprises Trust

Since its formation in 1958, the Kilmarnock Trust has continued to uphold the values of their founder that all people are valuable and deserving of compassion, respect and dignity. These values continue to guide them as they work towards a future where all people, including those with intellectual disabilities, have equal access to meaningful employment and development opportunities.

The Kilmarnock Trust seeks to support people with intellectual disabilities to engage meaningfully with their communities, while supporting growth in their skill sets to facilitate purposeful employment. The Trust also works to raise and maintain awareness of issues faced by people with intellectual disabilities. They believe that with the right support people with intellectual disabilities can lead fulfilling self determined lives. They are committed to supporting initiatives that provide people with intellectual disabilities the key to unlock their potential.