The head of a Harrogate charity is calling on the district’s business community to offer placement opportunities to disabled people.
Jackie Snape, chief executive of Disability Action Yorkshire, has made the plea so those with a disability can experience life in a workplace, including shops, offices, garages or hotels.
The charity – whose aim is to help disabled people lead as independent a life as possible – operates a highly regarded training centre on Hornbeam Park, where disabled people are taught the skills required to gain paid employment or volunteering opportunities.
Mrs Snape said: “If you have a disability the chances of gaining meaningful is significantly reduced, and, sadly, for many, they never get the opportunity to experience life in the workplace.
“What we are asking is businesses to consider giving someone with a disability a chance, be it a few days, a few weeks, or even on an ongoing basis.
“We would love to build up a bank of businesses from numerous sectors who, when a learner said ‘I’d want to be a mechanic, or hairdresser, or driver or chef’, we could then contact them.
“The learner would gain a real insight into what doing that particular kind of work would entail. Some may be observational and some of it practical.”
Mrs Snape added: “The length of the work experience placement would depend on the individual, but we would discuss this as suitable placements arose.
“The learners would be accompanied by a member of the Disability Action Yorkshire team for as long as would be needed. We would also be more than happy to help out with any disability awareness that organisations may feel they need.”
For those businesses who would like to find out more, they are asked to contact Jackie Snape on 01423 855314 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org