2023 ESF case study - Disability Action 4

Job Match is a project delivered by Disability Action which supports economically inactive or unemployed people with a disability as their primary barrier to paid employment.

The project is part funded through the Northern Ireland European Social Fund Programme 2014-2020 and the Department for the Economy.

In this case study Disability Action tells how the Job Match project helped this young person to secure employment.

‘Opportunities come not from waiting, but from seeking’


The young person joined the Job Match project when the business he had been working for closed. Unsure how to go about getting another job, he reached out to Disability Action and their Job Match team and was assigned an Employment Officer. After discussion, which included the participant, a close family member and the Employment Officer, it was identified that he required assistance finding a job that met his needs, support and understanding from potential employers and most importantly, a role that was akin to his interests and the skills that he had built up over the years. 

The participant had always looked forward to the workday and the benefits of having a job and the rewards it brought, both financially and mentally. He was a very motivated young man, however he was unsure where he was going, was not in a steady routine which was vital to him and experienced the anxiety and fear that starting a new role can bring.

Preparation and research

His Employment Officer assisted with CV development, cover letters interview preparation and updates about any recent roles in the area and sector of his liking. This helped the participant and his family member realise that vacancies were available, but it was knowing what websites and media platforms to use and, more importantly, how to approach employers.  

After a few unsuccessful interviews, applications, and some empty promises from employers, his Employment Officer contacted the owner of a small café who was looking to hire a kitchen assistant.  

With her empathy and understanding of the participant’s support needs, she was more than willing to offer him the opportunity to go in and show her his talents. The owner had nothing but positive and encouraging feedback to offer, including that the participant was integrating well into the team, had become more vocal and had enjoyed the comradery within the small team.

The participant started on a part-time basis and will be offered further roles once he is confident to undertake new tasks, as the manager believes that he will continue to develop and improve.    The participant has been delighted with the outcome and is thrilled with the continued pastoral support from his Employment Officer and the sustained support available from Workable NI.

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