WALKways trainees graduate

By Mary Dennehy

TALLAGHT University Hospital has provided a “rich training ground” for people with intellectual disabilities to experience the world of work, with 11 people recently graduating from a new programme.

The WALKways Tallaght University Hospital (TUH) Programme is a joint initiative between the hospital and WALK, which, based in Walkinstown, empowers people with disabilities to live “self-determined lives in an equal and inclusive society”.

WALKways TUH

The partnership programme between WALK and TUH aims to support adults with intellectual disabilities in gaining employability experience in order to access paid employment.

After a successful first year, the inaugural batch of trainees graduated having completed an 11 month internship, with ten new trainee applicants starting their internship this month.

Over the course of the past 11 months, 17 departments across the TUH campus facilitated work placements of around 14 weeks.

Each trainee completed three placements across departments including the National Children’s Hospital, speech and language therapy, medical records, catering, facilities and physiotherapy.

According to Sharon Larkin, Director of Human Resources at TUH: “We are delighted with the difference participating in this initiative has made to our working environment.

“The feedback from staff that have been involved has been overwhelmingly positive, the interns have developed their employability skills and lifelong friendships have been made.”

Of the group that graduated, seven are starting paid employment while four are moving onto further training.

For further detail on WALK visit www.walk.ie

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