Since Samee was set up four years ago it has helped 294 clients of which 58% are disabled and many have been out of work for more than five years with over 50% claiming Employment Support Allowance. DCF supported a pilot project providing tailored business start-up support for disabled clients.
Samantha Everard of Samee explained: ‘The supported project has only been running for six months and we have already engaged 68 Dorset based disabled entrepreneurs. The financial support from DCF has helped us to successfully support 13 disabled clients into self-employment and three into employment with our added advocacy support.’
The employability project was also recognised by ITV Meridian and the People’s Projects this year. A video was created which explains how the project operates and demonstrates three supported individuals.
Dan is one of the case studies on the film, a young man who has early onset dementia due to epilepsy as a child. He is a personal trainer who found himself out of work due to his medical condition so wanted to start his own business, enabling him to do what he loved but in a way that met his needs. Through many discussions, Samee worked out an alternative way of remembering his routines though music tones and flash cards. Dan now has 14 clients and, as his self-esteem is high, has just asked his long-term girlfriend to be his wife.
To watch the video, please click here.