Training and consultancy session for HAO employees, delivered by Robert Elston, from Status Employment

In mid-July, Mr. Robert Elston, the Chief Executive of theStatus Employment – the LEAD Expert Partner – visited the Services Center for Supported Employment opened by HAO in Constanta and provided a training and consultancy session to the HAO team involved in implementation of the mentioned project.

Robert, who has over 30 years of experience in supported employment of the people with disabilities, spoke to our colleagues about this model; he went through how to compile a detailed Job Analysis and how to work with employers when candidates get a job. Robert explained: “Job Support is a pivotal part of supported employment and good quality support will ensure good job retention”. He went through the techniques of systematic instruction, a form of training that is used widely in the UK to help people with learning disabilities achieve high quality jobs.

Robert’s visit was an excellent opportunity for our colleagues to: share success stories, talk about issues they face locally and nationally (labour law, the rights of people with disabilities, and so on), ask questions and obtain valuable information about the steps to be taken for a successful supported employment process.

In the afternoon, Robert and the HAO team visited Pizzeria San Marco, a local company where three young adults with disabilities, beneficiaries of the LEAD project, already work. Robert had the opportunity to talk to the manager and two of the young adults hired with HAO support, which were on duty that day. Robert was very impressed by the employer, who showed the real value of employing people with disabilities. He also saw the satisfaction of the HAO beneficiaries when they were talking about their work. The manager said that the three young adults are now valued team members and emphasized the constant and professional support provided by the HAO team in their integration process.

Robert was very impressed by the HAO team and their values. “It’s nice to see staff who not only share those vital values that believe disabled people can work but are also keen to learn how to improve their professional activity”.

Our team from Constanta greatly appreciated the opportunity to participate on this training session.Ms. Alina Dobrescu,Coordinator of the Supported Employment Program: “Robert is a very nice person with an impressive experience and it was a privilege to discuss supported employment with him.”


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