A young man from Ellesmere Port has overcome adversity to complete an interior design degree at Manchester Metropolitan University and find a work placement.
Michael Halpin, 23, has autism but despite this learning disability he completed his degree.
Without experience, he struggled to find a full-time job but has been given a helping hand by Wirral-based interior designer Claire Davies.
He will be working alongside Claire for an eight week period and will gain invaluable experience.
Claire, 27, is based in Upton and started her business in early 2016. When she had the chance to offer a work placement to a young adult with autism she took up the opportunity.
With an older brother who has autism, Claire knows only too well how difficult it can be to find companies willing to offer opportunities for work experience.
She was recently introduced to Michael through a representative from Standguide Training and Recruitment which isrunning a campaign called the Young Persons Supported Work Experience (YPSWE).
They provide voluntary work placements for unemployed people aged 18-24 to enhance their self-confidence, knowledge and experience of the workplace through practical learning.
The programme is designed to provide personalised wraparound support to each learner based on their initial needs assessment and appropriate to their disability/long term health condition.
“I’m glad that I’ll be able to support Michael through this work experience programme. It’ll be truly invaluable for him as it’s exactly what he wants to do in the future and will build his confidence.
“It’s a testament to his perseverance and he should be very proud of himself for pursuing his dream career, despite the obstacles.”