Real-life story - S
S has *Down’s Syndrome. He was very nervous when he first joined Project Choice, but grew in confidence as soon as he started his placements.
How I got into the role
I got a place on Project Choice, a supported internship programme for young people aged 16 to 24.
My first placement was at a local music hall where I had to meet and greet visitors. I wasn’t sure of myself or confident at first, but I really enjoyed it. It gave my confidence a boost and I thought “maybe I can do this after all”!
I decided to go for it and join the project full time and now I realise it was the best decision I’ve made.
By the time I undertook my final placement I was confident, standing tall and really keen to get a role in the NHS. A role came up in my placement department and I was successful at interview.
I am now employed as a medical records clerk for the NHS and I love it!
What I do
My main duties include pulling patient notes, which are needed for upcoming hospital appointments, from the medical records library. I scan and track the notes via the hospital’s note tracking system (called iFit) and I check appointments on the system to see where notes are needed.
I deliver and collect notes from different departments and I collect and log incoming post.
The best bits and challenges
Project Choice has provided various experiences and learning opportunities with support along the way from my workplace mentors and the Project Choice staff.
I knew I needed a mentor and tutor who would be patient and show me how to learn at my own pace. Even though it was hard, little by little I pushed myself and loved it. I also learned to travel independently. This was a big hurdle because not only was I nervous about travelling alone, I also had a huge phobia of dogs.
Through the project and the help of my workplace mentors, my confidence started to grow, as did my work skills and knowledge about work. I was starting to feel like I was work ready.
At the end of my time on the project I was awarded the Learner of the Year award at the National Festival of Learning. I am very proud of this achievement and I look forward to accomplishing more in my future!
Top tips for others
I am always keen to help the Project Choice team promote the project to others. I am proud to be a project ambassador.
*S is classed as a vulnerable young person under GDPR so we haven’t used his full name or said where he works or goes to college.