Thomas Pocklington Trust, in partnership with Visionary and Blind in Business, is supporting an exciting new internship programme that can benefit both visually impaired working age people and local sight loss organisations.

Over the next year, Thomas Pocklington Trust will be funding the placement of five internships for visually impaired people into member organisations across the UK. These internships will be between three to six months in length, with the opportunity to make the roles part time or full time depending on member and employee requirements. The interns will be on secondment from Thomas Pocklington Trust, with Pocklington picking up the cost of payroll at the London living wage of £9.40/hour. This wage is applicable to interns placed in any area of the UK.

In addition to five internships, we will also be supporting five workplace shadowing opportunities for visually impaired people in sight loss organisations across the UK over the next year. Shadowing will take place over two weeks and the travel expenses for those undertaking the shadowing will be reimbursed by Thomas Pocklington Trust.

As well as providing new employment opportunities for people with sight loss, we hope that this experience will be of great benefit to sight loss organisations too. For organisations who have not had any prior experience of supporting a visually impaired employee, Visionary staff will be on hand to guide organisations through the process with a view to improving the confidence of employers to take on visually impaired staff.

Pocklington and Visionary are also working in partnership with Bind in Business who support visually impaired university students across the UK into their first job after graduation. They will be advertising internship roles to the students and graduates they work with in order to ensure that people affected by sight loss have access to these opportunities.

We hope the launch of this new scheme will pave the way for more opportunities like this so that employing visually impaired people because the norm and not the exception.

If you would like more information on the scheme or to be involved in either the paid internships or the workplace shadowing opportunities, please contact Visionary’s Development and Innovation Manager, Alexa Sage, at alexa.sage@visionary.org.uk or drop her a line on 07800 936 407.