Welcome to the Real Opportunities Project Website.
The Regional SEN Transition to Employment Initiative, (also known as Real Opportunities), was a project that worked with young people aged 14-19 years old with a Learning Disability, Severe and Complex Needs or an Autistic Spectrum Disorder to help them plan for the future and become as independent as possible in their adult lives.
Real Opportunities was delivered between September 2010 and September 2014. Supported by the European Social Fund, the project was based in 9 local authorities in South Wales: Caerphilly, Bridgend, Carmarthenshire, Merthyr, Pembrokeshire, Neath Port Talbot, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Swansea, and Torfaen.
Other agencies delivering aspects of the project were: Elite Supported Employment Agency, Mencap Cymru, Remploy working with the National Autistic Society, Learning Disability Wales and the Welsh Centre of Learning Disabilities at Cardiff University.
Using a person centred approach, the project worked closely with young people, their families and professionals, supporting the young people to plan for their future, increase their confidence and skills, take part in a wide range of community based activities and accredited courses. It enabled 1,766 young people with a learning disability/ASD to make positive changes to their lives, and trained 1,096 non-disabled young people to offer peer mentor support.
In preparing the young people for work, 751 employers provided 1,210 work experience placements.
Working together with the local authorities of Bridgend, Blaenau Gwent, Carmarthenshire, Merthyr, Pembrokeshire, Neath Port Talbot, Rhondda Cynon Taff, Swansea, and Torfaen, Caerphilly County Borough Council is currently in the process of applying for European funding to re-instate the project.
This web site will be updated when there is any news.
In the meantime, if you are a young person, parent/carer or professional who is interested to find out more, please click on the relevant tab above.