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Optalis begin new partnership with Reading College!

We're delighted to announce that we've been selected to provide an exciting new service in partnership with Reading College!

Our Supported Employment Service (SES) has, for a number of years, successfully helped local people who are struggling to get a job and/or training, stay in a job or return to work.

The new service - named ACE@Optalis - will form part of Reading College's Learning Disability Curriculum, and will run as a pilot for one academic year starting this September. It will be based at Optalis’ head office at Trinity Court, Wokingham.

There are many reasons why people need this kind of help to get back into work. A person may have a physical or learning disability, mental health issues, or a long term health condition. Optalis’ specialist expertise in this type of support made it an ideal choice for Reading College.

The main aim of the service is to provide a smooth transition pathway for students who are leaving college, (having already gained basic employability skills) and are ready to enter the world of employment. The course will involve a combination of group training sessions, one to one sessions between a student and their job coach, work-related travel training, and supported work experience with local employers. In addition to this, Optalis will provide support for students to apply for, and maintain, a longer-term job – even after their course has ended.

It is for this reason that the course will take place in the business environment of Optalis’ Head Office. The idea is this will play a role in better equipping students with the skills needed to go out into the world of work, and also inspire confidence, independence, realistic aspirations, and self-advocacy.

Katrina Reeves, (interim) Business Area Manager for Employment, Learning and Leisure at Optalis, said: “I’m thrilled that the perseverance and commitment between Optalis’ Supported Employment Service staff and our special educational needs colleagues has proven to be worthwhile. These are very exciting times.”

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