Get to know ENABLE Works

Hello everyone!

As part of the content for our website, we thought we would introduce each of the partnering organisations involved in the BELVEDERE project, so everyone has a little background information on the work they do and why they decided to get involved with BELVEDERE.

First up to be introduced is ENABLE Works, one of the largest specialist employability services in Scotland. ENABLE Works works across 28 of Scotland’s 32 local authorities and supports over 5000 people with a disability into work every year.

ENABLE Works logo, which consists of the word "ENABLE" in all caps, written in pink above the word "Works" written in purple.

The organisation is the employability arm of the ENABLE group, which is made up of three pillars- ENABLE Scotland, ENABLE Works and ENABLE Cares. ENABLE Scotland campaigns and empowers people across Scotland to speak up for the human rights of every person who has a learning disability. All our campaigns are developed based on the experience of our members, ensuring we focus on the issues that have the most impact on their lives and that we are working to drive change wherever it is needed.

ENABLE Cares provides human rights driven, self-directed health & social care to people across Scotland. We support people to shape their own support and enable them to live the life they choose as independently as possible within their own communities.

Aerial view of a neighbourhood of houses.

ENABLE Works is our employability arm and the part of the group that is involved in the BELVEDERE project. We support people with disabilities and health conditions to address the barriers they may be facing to employment, explore their own individual talents and qualities, build their skills and move into meaningful, sustainable employment. We also work with over 2,000 employers across Scotland to increase diversity within their workforce and adopt inclusive workplace practices. We have a dedicated Diversity and Inclusion team who support employers to gain a greater understanding of disability issues and help them to feel more confident in hiring disabled employees and supporting them in the workplace. This works goes hand-in-hand with our supported employment models, which provide holistic, person-centred specialist support for people with disabilities or long-term health conditions with the aim of moving them into valued, fulfilling work roles.

A person's hand holding a tablet displaying a calendar, near a white ceramic mug and notebook.

Our organisation was created in 1954, when five sets of parents met in Glasgow to discuss the possibility of setting up a Scottish organisation to help parents of children who have a learning disability, and to get better services for their families. At the time, most children and adults in the UK who had learning disabilities were living with and cared for by their families, but they faced strong stereotypes, stigmatism and a lack of support. These families wanted to change that and on the day they set up their initial meeting, over 300 people attended. An organisation was born and 40 years later that organisation would become ENABLE Scotland. Since then we have fought to ensure that people who have learning disabilities have the same human rights as others, enabling them to play a part in their communities, to have an education and a job, and to develop the friendships that others take for granted.

The ENABLE Scotland logo, made up of the words "ENABLE Scotland" in purple on top of three turquoise lines at right angles made to form the shape of Scotland, inside a purple circle.
ENABLE Scotland logo.

My role within ENABLE Works is as an Employability Team Leader for our All in Glasgow programme, a supported employment project for people with a disability or long-term health condition living in Glasgow City- created to address their needs and aspirations. In 2018, the Scottish Government published their Disabled People and the Labour Market statistics, which showed that that nationally 45.6% of disabled people were in employment, compared to 81.1% of the non-disabled population. However, in Glasgow this was much lower, with only 36% of disabled people in employment and the economic downturn as a result of COVID-19 expected to make the situation much worse. This is why All in Glasgow is specifically aimed at ensuring well-paid, sustainable jobs for the people we support and ensuring organisations in the city have a culture, practices and overall strategy which is fair and inclusive.

Grayscale skyline of Glasgow, with the ESF, Glasgow City Council and ENABLE Works logo sitting above it
Grayscale skyline of Glasgow, with the ESF, Glasgow City Council and ENABLE Works logo sitting above it

ENABLE Works were extremely keen to be involved in the BELVEDERE project when we heard of the aims to identify best practice examples and approaches of supporting disadvantaged clients across Europe into employment and developing further ones. It is crucial that the professionals supporting our clients can identify appropriate digital tools to empower our clients and prepare them for their new working lives. Digital technology is more readily available than ever before and will arguably play a central role in both the personal and professional lives of our clients. Being digitally literate in today’s world has overwhelming benefits for our clients and so it is incredibly important that practical and sustainable measures are taken to ensure clients can access available digital tools which will be appropriate to their specific requirements and initial and ongoing support is available to them in using these tools.

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, being digitally literate has had invaluable benefits. The internet has meant we could keep connected with our friends and family, we can be kept informed on current events in our local areas and world news, and it has also been used for entertainment, online learning, work, shopping and countless other public services. For all of these reasons, ENABLE Works are incredibly excited to be a part of the BELVEDERE project and developing a toolkit which looks at innovative uses of digital technology and sharing an approach which can be adopted across Europe to support our clients and ensure that they too can reap the benefits of an increasingly digital world!

Development of the curriculum for the “Communication and Collaboration” module

Steps upwards
Illustration: FernUniversität

We have achieved an important interim goal. The basic framework for the curriculum of the learning modules is in place and the contents for the first toolbox (communication and collaboration) have been developed. The manuscript for the introductory video is also ready. The first recordings in the MOOC Studio have been made. We now have a good template for the further processing of the following modules and are optimistic that all partners have a good working basis for the upcoming LTTA. 

Very different and similar at the same time

If we look at different organisations how they support disadvantaged young people and adults in vocational training, qualification and placement, an impressive number of different approaches can be found. Even more, if we look also at organisations in different European countries. But with this diversity, how can we manage to find the similarities as well as a common language in a project with partners from four countries so that the results to be developed in it fit everywhere?

This exciting challenge stood at the beginning of the three-year ERASMUS+ project called BELVEDERE. The target group of this project is professionals from social organisations who accompany and support disadvantaged young people and adults on their way into a employment. Five such organisations from Germany, Scotland, Spain and Austria are working together in BELVEDERE, with more than 200 persons from this specific target group.

While all five organisations share the same aim of supporting these young people and adults, their processes to reach this aim vary considerably. Through a series of interviews to dive into these approaches, and a following analysis of the results, a unified process model was developed that is intended to serve as the needed common language.

This picture shows 8 process phases that are shared among the project partners

The figure shows the six phases (in blue) of accompanying and supporting disadvantaged clients that could be identified in all participating organisations (despite different labeling and different variations regarding the specific approaches within these phases), and two support phases (in green) that span along the entire length of participation by clients. In the further course of the project, this model is used to identify suitable technical support in each of these phases and to develop realistic deployment scenarios for them with high transfer potential to other organisations.

Further information and details on this BELVEDERE Unified Process Model is available in the results’ section of this website.

Website Kick-Off

Hello World! We are online … This is the first post on our project website. We are planning to publish news on project progress and first results throughout the project’s lifetime on a regular basis.

English (UK)