The Regenda Group embraces neurodiversity via Supported Internships
The Regenda Group, which includes Regenda Homes, is proud to be one of a number of organisations across Liverpool embracing neurodiversity and providing Supported Internships for students with Autism.
According to ACAS, it is estimated that around 1 in 7 people (more than 15% of people in the UK) are neurodivergent, meaning that the brain functions, learns and processes information differently. Neurodivergence includes Attention Deficit Disorders, Autism, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia.
Over a 10-month period, three interns from Abbot’s Lea School will work with The Regenda Group.
Abbot’s Lea School is an outstanding and award-winning centre of excellence in Autism education, research and professional development. It was recently crowned as a winner of the 2019 Educate Awards in the category of Career Aspiration.
The school’s Headteacher, Ania Hildrey said: “We are delighted to work with The Regenda Group and are very pleased with the company’s open employment practices – it is only through such collaboration that the schools adjust their educational programmes to match the needs of employers and the employers harness the many talents, often hidden behind the seemingly inaccessible façade of Autism.”
As well as learning employability skills, the students gain the opportunity to develop their independence and learn to contribute positively to the teams and companies they are working with.
Lesley Penton, Partnerships Manager at The Regenda Group, said: “The Regenda Group is proud to be involved with the internship programme. As a regeneration business that is passionate about providing opportunities for people and raising aspirations through education and training, the Abbot’s Lea School Supported Internship programme is a great fit for our organisation.”
George West who is one of the interns working at Regenda, said “This experience has opened up my horizons. I am more confident and independent. I would recommend to anyone considering an internship to come along and get a feel for the people you will be working with, take your time and see it as an opportunity where you can apply your existing abilities to new experiences”.
Each student has a Job Coach who liaises between the intern, their family, the school and the business ensuring a rewarding experience for all.
All Regenda Group employees undertake specialist training from Abbot’s Lea School, providing them with the knowledge and practical skills to work successfully alongside the interns whilst also helping them to understand the benefits of neurodiversity in the workplace.
Ken Kristiansen, Team Leader at Regenda Homes works closely with George and commented: “George has a tremendous level of enthusiasm that makes it a pleasure to work with him. His skills as a communicator, in particular his writing ability, have enabled us to make improvements within our team. He has been an absolute asset with so much to offer future employers.”
Image: L-R George West, Intern at Regenda Homes, Ken Kristiansen, Team Leader at Regenda Homes.