Work Ready Crew project gets underway thanks to Caterpillar

CATERPILLAR STAFF RAISE £34,000 TO HELP IMPROVE THE PROSPECTS FOR YOUNG DISABLED PEOPLE

Staff at Caterpillar in Desford have raised nearly £34,000 for local charity, Menphys.  Events throughout the year included a Family Fun Day on the Desford site, a sponsored bike ride, marathon runs, a bring-and-buy sale, an inflatable 5K race and a triathlon at Rutland Water.  Menphys was very pleased with their initial £21,500 fundraising efforts, but when Caterpillar decided to top this up with another £12,500 from their Community Fund, Menphys were delighted.

Menphys supports disabled children, young people and their families in Leicester and Leicestershire. Money raised by Caterpillar will go towards supporting Menphys’ Work Ready Crew project.  Menphys and Caterpillar are working in partnership to provide work placement opportunities for disabled 16-25 year-olds.  The first cohort of young disabled people started at Caterpillar in January 2019, taking up placements in different areas of the business such as manufacturing, engineering and packaging.  Each group of participants will spend six weeks on the scheme, then a new cohort of young people will join, giving them their first experience in the world of work and increasing their chances of employability

Young people with disabilities are at greater risk of coming under the NEET umbrella (Not in Education, Employment or Training) as able-bodied young people.

There are currently 70 young people from Menphys on the waiting list to join this programme and the charity is looking to use the money to expand the programme among other partner companies to broaden the scheme.  A toolkit for prospective employers will be jointly developed by Menphys and Caterpillar, which will be a guide to assist other employers interested in providing these opportunities for disabled young people.

Jessica Buckley, Menphys Work Ready Crew Project Co-ordinator, added: “The £34,000 donation from Caterpillar will ensure that we can provide work opportunities for disabled young people.  Menphys are so grateful to Caterpillar, which will help us to improve the lives of these young people”

“The Work Ready Crew project will offer an excellent platform for young people with disabilities to develop new skills, enhance their CV and increase their employability as they progress to adulthood.”

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