Even a broken arm couldn’t stop Olivia Stanbury from completing her housekeeping placement at Premier Inn in Twigworth. The 19 year old horse-riding enthusiast from Gloucester was keen to continue her placement despite having to wear a plaster cast for six weeks following a riding accident.
Olivia who has a learning disability, was part of a Supported Internship programme through Gloucestershire College with support from Remploy, the disability employment specialists.
She’s now been offered a full time position with the housekeeping team and will soon start training for reception too. Olivia said: “Since I have been at Premier Inn I have really grown as an individual and have made new friends. I am a more confident and because people treat me like an adult, I have learnt to be positive and constructive in the way I deal with situations in work and at home.”
Supported Internships, such as the one offered by Gloucestershire College are a vital tool in helping young people with learning disabilities transition from education into employment, and improve the employment rate for people with a learning disability, which is just 6%.
Olivia added: “My employment advisor Graham worked with me on every part of the job and supported me with travel and training. Graham visited me every day of my internship and helped me with any issues at work or in my life.”
Pauline Scott, Olivia’s manager at Premier Inn, said: “We have seen some major changes in Olivia since she started working with us. Starting out as a shy and quiet girl with not too much to say for herself, she has grown in stature and is now working to a very high standard.”
While Olivia is thoroughly enjoying her role in housekeeping at the moment, she is really keen to work with children in the future, she said: “It has been my dream for many years to work in child care one day.”
She added: “ I will need to get other qualifications first and I’m hoping this role will help me to gain valuable experience for the future. I want to put my wages to good use, completing additional training - I’ve even told my Mum I will be able to help her with the mortgage now I am working!”