About Us

Information About The Bren Project

The Bren Project is a small, independent charity offering people with learning disabilities and autism the opportunity to experience supported, bespoke work placements in Chester and the surrounding area.

We want the people who we support to enjoy the experience, feel comfortable and accomplished, and take pride in becoming part of the workforce.

We work in partnership with the community and are committed to nurturing a more diverse workplace.

The Bren Project was established in 2005 as a registered charity and company limited by guarantee, and was named in memory of Brenda Godwin, a leading light and inspiration to many in the world of supported employment. Sadly, Brenda passed away in 2004.

Our Support Model:

A brief summary of our support programme is as follows:

Stage 1:

  • Beneficiary recruitment and registration, including a full briefing for parents and carers.
  • For individuals who are not ready to participate, we signpost to other appropriate support agencies.
  • Beneficiary Induction Programme to introduce the individual to the work of the charity and the support process they will benefit from.
  • 8 week placement at Bren Bikes for those with an interest in working in our social enterprise workshop.
  • In depth vocational profiling to ascertain the individual’s preferred vocational choice.
  • Development of an Individual Action Plan setting out clear aims and objectives. This document will evolve as the beneficiary progresses through the programme.

Stage 2:

  • Targeted Job Searching to meet the requirements of the Action Plan with a view to setting up appropriate work placements in a real work setting.
  • Once a potential host employer has been identified, informal Workplace Tour for the participant including a meeting with staff/supervisors.
  • Confirmation of work placement details with all parties. All Health and Safety/Risk Assessments undertaken.
  • Introduction of a Job Coach to the individual and parents/carers who will provide the necessary one to one support at the workplace and Travel Training if appropriate.

Stage 3:

  • Commencement of the work placement – close monitoring by project staff with ongoing feedback from the individual, Job Coach and participating employer to ensure the Action Plan is being met.
  • Gradual fading out of the Job Coach to encourage independence and help establish if the required tasks can be done without support.
  • End of placement review.
  • Negotiation of employment, setting up of further work placements or signposting individual on to alternative training/support agencies to help continue the individual’s personal development.
  • For beneficiaries who secure paid employment, we offer support with travel arrangements, benefit claims, setting up bank accounts etc.
  • An ongoing support service for the new employee, employer and parents or carers to help sustain the employment long-term.

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