Having the opportunity to be in a work or volunteering type role can provide a sense of purpose, self-worth and the opportunity to contribute to the community.
This section of our website will look at how you could support your family member with disability to pursue their interests and strengths to form a work or volunteering type role in their life.
When we use the words “work role” this can include a range of opportunities and experiences from volunteering in a work environment a few hours a week, setting up a small business, or being in a paid role a few hours a week to full time hours. It is still important to think of all the possibilities, as partial participation can still entail full involvement in the role.
Taking the lead when exploring employment opportunities or work roles for someone with disability can be critical in the success of gaining a meaningful role.
Where to start?
Think about passions/interests/strengths of your family member - think ordinary, everyday life options.
Some families have found it helpful to first think about the vision for their family member with their working life as part of that vision.
It can help clarify what is important to the person, what they enjoy, how they want to spend their time, and their dreams.
Some people with disability may be able to articulate their own vision. Some may need assistance. Others may need those closest to them to dream for them based on their long standing love and knowledge of the person.
Try not to think of any limitations or barriers or support needs when thinking about a vision. That can come later.
The Resourcing Inclusive Communities website provides guidance about developing and creating a vision.
Possible questions to consider when thinking about interests
- What do they like doing in their spare time?
- What do they dislike doing?
- Focus on strengths – what are they?
- What would they look forward to?
- What type of environments do they like to be around? Outdoors? Indoors?
- What do they do at home to relax?
Our webpage Employment opportunities for all - practical ideas and examples will give you further ideas and examples of what can be possible.