CAE secures £322k to transform employment prospects for young disabled Londoners

Published: 12 Mar 2020

The Centre for Accessible Environments (CAE) is preparing to launch its Pathways project which will support young disabled Londoners into careers in inclusive design and accessible environments. The project, which has won 3 year funding totalling £322K from City Bridge Trust’s Bridge to Work programme will kick off in April 2020.

The Pathways project aims to work with 40 participants over its three year programme offering:

  • An initial taster session in June 2020 for young people to find out more about the programme;
  • 2 days training per month over 12 months on a wide variety of topics relating to disability awareness and inclusive design with practical exercises;
  • Mentoring and shadowing opportunities with disability access professionals;
  • Advice, support, networking and continued professional development opportunities during and after the programme.

The City Bridge Trust’s Bridge to Work programme provides funding to support organisations to narrow the employment gap for young disabled people in London. This programme recognises the barriers to employment faced by disabled people can be multiple and complex and that many of the challenges can be overcome with the right support.

CAE’s Head of Business Development, Fara Muneer, says: “For us, making the UK more accessible for disabled people isn’t just about adding ramps or accessible toilets, it’s also removing barriers to employment. We’re grateful that the City Bridge Trust has chosen CAE as a partner for its Bridge to Work programme. We hope that the Pathways project will help develop the next generation of access and disability professionals who will help deliver the vision of a more inclusive environment- a key driver for City Bridge Trust and CAE”

Actress and disability campaigner, Sam Renke, adds: “I’ve seen first-hand how impactful the Bridge to Work programme has been through my work with Whizz Kids who are a long term project partner of the scheme. For young disabled Londoners like me, it can be an anxiety fuelled journey trying to find a job. This is why we need more programmes that support disabled people into work. I think it’s great that CAE are not only providing disabled people with employment support, but are encouraging them into careers in inclusive design, which is a subject that effects all disabled people.”

Dhruv Patel, Chairman of the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust said:

“Barriers to work faced by disabled people can be multiple and complex, but many challenges can be overcome with the right support.

“Our Bridge to Work programme aims to address this, supporting disabled people aged 16-30 into paid employment through advice, support and developing good practice.

“I am delighted therefore that we are supporting the Pathways project, and look forward to seeing those who go through the scheme succeed in careers in inclusive design and creating accessible environments. ”

Get in touch with a member of the CAE team to register your interest and get updates about the June taster day event: