An internship programme at Progress Housing Group, which supports young adults with learning difficulties and autism in South Ribble, has been shortlisted in Lancashire Apprenticeship Awards for Diversity and Inclusion for the second year.

Progress Housing Group has partnered with DFN Project SEARCH, Runshaw College, Lancashire County Council, Hft, South Ribble Borough Council and the Department for Works and Pensions to provide valuable internship experience.

The Project SEARCH programme offers a year-long training and employment internship for adults aged 19-21 with a learning disability or autism. The internships are carried out at Progress Housing Group, providing ‘real life’ work experience in various departments within the housing group; combined with training in employability and independent living skills, to help our young learners transition successfully from college to paid employment.

Robert Porter, Director of Housing Operations at Progress Housing Group and Chair of the Project SEARCH South Ribble Partnership Steering Group, said: “We are delighted that our Project SEARCH partnership programme has been shortlisted for this award. Project SEARCH is a fantastic programme that makes a real difference to young people who have a learning disability or autism who have a desire to work.  The programme opens up the ‘world of work’ to them, supporting them to learn new skills and helping them get ready to find employment after they graduate.

“Now into our second year of the programme, it has been wonderful to see the our young learners grow under the tremendous support offered by colleagues at Progress Housing Group and from the other partners, fantastically, the majority of our graduates form year one have secured permeant employment.”

The Lancashire Apprenticeship Awards celebrate and recognise the hard work of individuals and organisations involved in apprenticeships and how they shape the future of those involved.

The winners of the Lancashire Apprenticeship Awards will be announced at an awards evening on Thursday, 23 March, at Preston North End’s Stadium.


What is Project SEARCH?

Project SEARCH is a transition to work programme for students with learning disabilities and autism. Progress Housing Group have partnered with Hft, DFN Project SEARCH, Runshaw College, Lancashire County Council and South Ribble Borough Council to support ten interns from South Ribble, aged 19 to 21, to work in various roles within Progress Housing Group.

Find out more about Project SEARCH Internships at Progress Housing Group by visiting: Project SEARCH launches in South Ribble with Progress Housing Group, Runshaw College and South Ribble Borough Council.

If you would like to learn more about DFN Project SEARCH, please visit: