Pure supported internships boost career opportunities for Stockport residents

Wednesday 6th September saw the launch of Stockport Council’s Pure Supported Internships programme, delivered in partnership with Pure College.

Pure supported internships boost career opportunities for Stockport residents

(L-R): Councillor Jilly Julian (Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources); Caroline Morgan (Pure Innovations); Louise Parrott-Bates (CEO of Pure Innovations); Lucy Shaw (Stockport Council); Kathryn Rees (Director of Strategy, Stockport Council)

The launch event, which featured an introduction to the programme from Councillor Jilly Julian, Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources at the council, was attended by business leaders from across the borough.

The Pure supported internships scheme is designed to give those with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) a taste of the working world in a supported environment. The council is just one of the businesses across Greater Manchester who have committed to taking on supported interns, to help give residents with SEND the chance to gain some work experience and even get a permanent role at the end of the placement. With only 5.1% of adults aged 18-64 with a learning disability gaining permanent paid employment in the UK, compared to 80% of their peers, the need for the programme is clear.

The scheme is just one of the ways the council continues to increase the number of people with SEND it supports through various employment programmes. Pure supported internships will allow the council to create more opportunities, in addition to the already strong history the local authority has of offering successful placements, some of which have developed into 15 – 20 year careers for council colleagues.

Already testimonials from businesses who have taken part in the programme demonstrate the value of taking on a support intern under the scheme in partnership with Pure College.

Barry, General Manager at The Alchemist bar and restaurant, said of his supported intern: “Tom is an absolute delight to work with. Always comes in, on time, with a smile on his face and cracks on with his tasks for the day. All whilst lifting the spirits of the entire bar team. He is now the longest serving member of our bar team & is a real asset to his department. Tom never shies away from getting involved.”

“I can’t speak highly enough of Pure Innovations & everything that they do to provide opportunities for young people in the workplace. They not only support the placement of their students, but continue to help with further learning outside of the classroom. Kate, in particular, has been fantastic in championing the candidates.”

Alicia, part of the team at the New World Trading Company, who own major hospitality brands like The Botanist and Manchester’s The Oast House, is another employer who sees the value in taking part in the programme: “I really can’t say enough good things about Ellice. She is just a ray of sunshine to be around. She is punctual, hardworking and a great team player. She has a wonderful relationship with all of the other members of our team and is beloved by all of our regular guests. She is currently the longest standing team member of our team at The Botanist Alderley Edge, and is an asset to the business.”

Councillor Jilly Julian, Cabinet Member for Finance and Resources at Stockport Council, commented: “It was fantastic to see so many local businesses attend the launch event for our Pure supported internships programme. Working together, we can ensure that all of our residents are given the opportunity to shine. At the council, we will be leading by example and working closely with Pure College to take on a number of supported interns across our departments. We can offer hands-on work experience in a variety of different areas, working alongside our friendly team of colleagues.”

If you are a Stockport business who would like to find out more about the Pure supported internship scheme, please email caroline.morgan@pureinnovations.co.uk.