#EmpDay22 | Nolan’s story: Working as a SEND Youth Voice Assistant at Trafford Council

Nolan was supported to find part-time work at Trafford Council in their SEND Local Offer department.

I am really enjoying my job as a part-time special educational needs and disabilities youth engagement assistant. My job is interesting because there is a range of tasks to do.

My tasks include admin such as working on spreadsheets of the views of the website, checking the social media and updating the calendar for other council departments to find out when we posted something, checking emails, checking when the directory pages were last updated, fixing broken links and correcting spelling errors.

These tasks are very important because residents need to find relevant and up to date information. It is against the law for a council not to provide this. If the information isn’t there, people with special educational needs and disability (SEND) can’t get the support they need. There is a lot of false or outdated information about SEND on the internet, so it is important to have reliable sources.

The team are great to work with. They are friendly colleagues and are committed to SEND. The office is a pleasant environment and the IT is reliable. I enjoy meeting people and helping out with the tasks.

I have various duties, so I’m going to give you some examples:

  • I visit sessions for people with special needs such as Carrington Riding Centre where people can go horse riding and I went to see the small animals such as cats, dogs, and rabbits. These centres offer alternative schools for children with SEND.
  • I went to a stay and play session at Delamere School where there were music sessions and a parachute game. I went to the The Play Factory and went down a big slide, took part in laser tag and went on a trampoline game. So basically, I get to play while doing my job!
  • I visited a Down syndrome session at a school, where they did singing and signing and art activities, They also did speech and language therapy. I really enjoyed these activities. The students were happy and enjoying themselves, which helps their personal development.
  • I have written about my experience and have some videos on the Trafford Directory Local Offer. I uploaded videos at the sessions to promote on social media so people can find out what the sessions are like before they go. This provides more information for residents of Trafford.

Trafford Council is a great place to work and I really enjoy it. The only problem is, it is a temporary contract – I wish it was permanent!

I would recommend this job to anybody. It would be a great job to apply for.

Nolan used our Trafford Supported Employment service.

Find out more about how United Response are supporting people with disabilities, autism and mental health needs into work and training here.

This post was originally published for Employability Day here. 

Deaf people are twice as likely to experience mental health issues such as anxiety and depression

Two people, a man smiling and a woman communicating by sign language


This Mental Health Awareness Week Royal Association for Deaf People have shared a powerful video from Karen.

Watch this 5 minute video here

Trigger Warning: This video has mentions of self-harm, suicide and mental health topics. Deaf people are twice as likely to experience mental health issues such as anxiety and depression. It is critical that every deaf person has access to health care and mental health support in BSL – this includes important services that support positive mental health and wellbeing. In this deeply personal video Karen explains why. For more information and advice, the following services can help:

– RAD Live Chat: http://www.royaldeaf.org.uk/

– SHOUT Crisis Text Service: https://signhealth.org.uk/with-deaf-p…

– SignHealth: https://signhealth.org.uk/​ – Deaf4Deaf: https://www.deaf4deaf.com/

– Mind: https://www.mind.org.uk/

– Rethink: https://www.rethink.org/

– Your local GP If you have been affected by this story, please contact us on Live Chat http://www.royaldeaf.org.uk/​ – we are here Monday to Friday 9am-9pm and Saturday and Sunday 2pm-6pm. Take care and remember, if you are feeling worried about mental health and wellbeing (your own, or someone else’s) you are not alone – we are here to help.

#MentalHealthAwarenessWeek​ BSL (British Sign Language) Royal Association for Deaf people: https://royaldeaf.org.uk/