THOMAS Pocklington Trust’s London Employment Programme Pilot ‘Works for Me’ has won VISION 2020 UK’s Astbury Award 2016.

The employment programme, which was headed up by Thomas Pocklington Trust (TPT’s)  Employment Team,  Alexa Sage, Martin Sigsworth and Charlie Coyle, was announced as the winner of the Astbury Award 2016 at a ceremony in London yesterday (Monday, September 19).

The award, named after former VISION 2020 UK Chair and inaugural recipient Nick Astbury, is given in recognition of work that fosters excellence in collaboration within the eye health and sight loss sectors.

TPT, a national sight loss charity, established ‘Works for Me’ to support more visually impaired people to gain and retain employment, and to prevent people with existing employment from losing their jobs due to sight loss. It has had a strong success rate of almost 40 per cent.

The pilot collaborated with businesses, charities and individual professionals which gave it access to resources far beyond its own capacity including event space, expertise, volunteering hours, professional networks and peer support, all of which contributed to the staggering employment outcomes.

Going forward, Visionary has developed Guiding Principles based on an evaluation, by NCVO’s Charities Evaluation Services, of the pilot programme to share the learning to support other organisations in the sector in delivering employment services to blind and partially sighted people.

Alexa Sage, who managed the TPT Employment Programme Pilot, commented: “It is an honour for the project to win the Astbury Award; it shows how important employment is for visually impaired people. It is a real tribute to everyone who has been involved and helped make the programme such a success. Thank you to all of our partners who collaborated on this programme and helped people gain and retain employment.”

Peter Corbett, TPT Chief Executive, commented: “We are very proud that our Employment Programme has won the Astbury Award and of the programme itself. Employment is a major area of focus for us which we look to build on in the future. It’s encouraging that it has been recognised, and is valued and appreciated. It shows that ‘Works for Me’ is a good base for us to build further projects on.”

The Visionary central team is part of the team of organisations which co-produced the booklet ‘Sight Loss – What we needed to know’ which received a Highly Commended certificate.

TPT’s London Vision Strategy Programme, headed up by TPT Projects Director London Cathy Low, was also shortlisted for the award.

For more information contact:

Thomas Pocklington Trust on 020 8995 0880.

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