Car Company Funds Employment Program for Young Adults With Autism
Job-hunting is a stressful time for any young person, and getting repeatedly rejected over and over can be extremely discouraging. These young adults can quickly lose hope and give up, feeling that they will never get hired. Having autism only makes this even more difficult. Not only is the job market saturated with stiff competition, but these young adults are also competing against the stigma of their condition. The job market is especially tough for people with any type of disability. It’s estimated that in the United Kingdom, only 16% of the autistic community is employed full-time.
A car company in the United Kingdom has helped start a program called the SPACE Project, which helps young adults with autism find work. The program was made possible through the Sycamore Trust UK, which is an autism-specific charity based in East London, England. Funding support came from a local car company owner, Glyn Hopkin, who started the Glyn Hopkin Charitable Foundation. Together, the two organizations have set out to solve a problem they both see within their own communities.
Many autistics, although capable, have a tough time getting hired. Despite being qualified through various job positions, they are constantly rejected. Many companies fail to see their talents and intelligence, although they would greatly benefit from them.
The SPACE Project helps autistic people find jobs and advocate their values in the business world. They help prepare candidates for job interviews and connect them with support guides and other related resources. For people with autism, this program helps them earn and maintain full-time jobs. In order to accommodate autistic employees, the project supports local businesses by helping and guiding them. In providing this aid, the foundation hopes local companies will work harder to hire employees with autism and help those in the autistic community to maintain full-time positions.
This program also helps people retain their jobs once the employer-employee match is completed. For ongoing support, the project provides a personal hotline offering guidance to employees whenever they encounter any issues.
Glyn Hopkin believes that people with autism have opportunities everywhere. He is the owner of several car dealerships in southeast London. He feels that a little push in the right direction is needed for both employers and employees alike.
During a job hunt, people with autism face several difficulties. They compete with those who are free of any kind of disorder or stigma; they are often misunderstood in regards to their skills and true worth; and in social settings and unstable routines, their condition can hinder their abilities, thus resulting in limited job availability. And the challenges do not end there. Another obstacle is holding down a job once hired. Employers should understand their employees by providing them with the best environment, rather than focusing on any ill-completed work. Ways to maintain a good work relationship are to have a mutual understanding and to know how to communicate properly. Autistic people thrive on structure and routine, so, when there is a consistent schedule, they perform their best.
The SPACE Project brings employers and talented employees together. Glyn has helped people recognize the true worth of individuals with autism spectrum disorder. Through this program, he wants local businesses to profit from hiring these qualified individuals.
The SPACE program was launched in July, 2017. It has helped many adults in the Barking and Dagenham, Havering, and Redbridge areas. Due to this program, many have found success in local car businesses and in the motor retail business. The team wants to propel the program into other neighboring areas as well so that more individuals with autism can get full-time jobs.