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Employment First (Tower Project & Hackney Supported Internship)

Disability Employment and Training Hub,
Employment First,
Unit 2 Candy Wharf,
22 Copperfield Rd,
E3 4RL
Telephone: 0208 9803500


Covid-19 and related government lockdown service update.

Service delivery changes due to the current pandemic has led to Tower Project - JET Services creating a hotel @ home Programme to support it's students. The programme increases independent living and employment skills at the same time supporting them to learn and practice key work tasks required in the hospitality sector during lockdown.

Students completing the tasks will be more work ready and the programme will help transform those who may have more relaxed views on housework by encouraging them to play a more active role in daily household tasks.

This is especially important and beneficial during this period of staying at home.

View: hotel @ home programme workbook

Life during lock down -  Interview with one of our interns

For more information about this programme contact the service. 

For the latest service information check the Tower Project website .

Who we are...

The Tower Project is a leading East London disability charity that was set up over 30 years ago by local parents and carers to deliver high quality support services that maximise the independence and community participation of people with learning disabilities and autism.

Over 800 disabled children, young people and adults access Tower Project’s wide range of innovative services including:

  • supported housing
  • community outreach
  • day opportunities
  • short breaks and
  • supported employment

What we do:

The Tower Project Job, Enterprise and Training (JET) service is a national award winning provider of supported employment and training services for people with learning disabilities and autism.

Based in London’s first Disability Employment and Training Hub in Mile End Park our in house team of:

  • specialist Job Coaches
  • Disability Employment Advisers and
  • SEN Tutors in partnership to deliver a range of successful education and employment programmes which achieve high progression rates into employment.

At JET we have been delivering successful supported internship programmes since 2015 and the popularity of our programmes reflects our success in progressing interns from our programmes into sustainable, paid employment.

Employment First 

The Tower Project's Hackney Supported Internship Offer

The Tower Project JET Service’s supported internship programme provides interns a springboard from education into the world of work in East London’s thriving hospitality and leisure sector. 

As a programme that aims to progress interns into sustainable employment, we have focused our employer engagement on the hospitality and leisure sector because research and experience shows us this sector offers our interns great employment opportunity prospects at the end of the programme coupled with strong predicted sector growth which will support clients to remain in work and develop their careers.

To maximise these opportunities, we have designed an internship programme in partnership with employers that will support our interns to acquire the skills, qualities, attributes and experience that employers want from model employees.

Whether you aspire to be a Barista in a Hackney Coffee House or an Usher in the Hackney Picturehouse, this is the programme for you.

JET’s Employment First - supported internship programme is delivered 3 days per week throughout the length of the academic year.

After an initial induction into the programme which will take place at our Employment and Training hub in Mile End, the vast majority of the remaining programme time will be spent with a partner employer undertaking an extended work placement arranged by JET and supported by JET Job Coaches.

Work placement partners on this programme include the Haggerston Perk Coffee House in Goldsmith Row, Hackney and the Rich Mix Cinema and Arts Centre in Shoreditch.

Depending on the work placement, interns will be supported and trained to undertake a range of work tasks / activities and will work towards achieving the same standards as their work colleagues.

Work Tasks  / Skills that interns could be developing / undertaking include:

  • Making and serving espresso coffees and other hot and cold drinks to a high standard
  • Making and preparing a range of hot and cold food for individual customers and for events and functions
  • Operating a wide range of catering equipment independently to a high standard
  • Operating an electronic till system and taking cash and card payments and giving change
  • Maintaining a clean working environment and meeting food / health and safety standards
  • Setting up large event areas for concerts, theatre productions and exhibition space
  • Providing drinks  / canapes services for events
  • Supporting event bar / drink stations
  • Restocking bar / kitchen
  • Providing Cinema Usher services
  • Operating a cinema concession.

In addition to work tasks our interns will be supported to undertake vocational training including health and safety at work, food safety, barista skills and customer service skills.

Travel Training

Travel training sessions can be delivered on this programme by JET Job Coaches who will support interns to identify the most accessible route and complete the journey with them on a number of occasions until the intern can travel independently

Job Coaches

JET has a team of Job Coaches who are dedicated to providing expert support to interns on the programme whilst on work placement.

All JET Job Coaches have completed Training in Systematic Instruction (TSI) which is accredited by the World Association of Supported Employment.

Training in Systematic Instruction (TSI) is the gold standard of in-work support and is advocated by the Department for Education. By using TSI in work, JET Job Coaches can support interns to undertake more complex work tasks by breaking complex tasks down into sequences of smaller actions.

JET Job Coaches also support the employers and will ensure they have an in depth understanding of the work place where the clients are on placement and will learn to complete the work tasks the clients will be undertaking prior to the placement starting so that TSI can be applied.  For example all JET Job Coaches supporting this programme have also undertaken training to become expert Baristas.

Disability Employment Advisers / Client Progression

The JET Service has a team of Disability Employment Advisers that support the progression of the interns towards employment both during the internship and for six months after supported internship programme ends.

Based in JET’s Disability Employment and Training Hub in Mile End.  JET’s Disability Employment Advisers support clients to prepare for work by providing regular one to one support sessions for interns throughout the supported internship and for a further six months after the programme ends to. 

The interns will work with their Advisers to produce employment action plan and the Advisers will support clients to overcome any barriers to employment.

Advisers will support interns to:

  • create effective CV’s
  • provide support with applications
  • access to JET Job Clubs and
  • broker employment opportunities through JET’s employer engagement programme

JET’s Disability Employment Adviser Team are award winning experts in their field and one of the few teams in UK where all Advisers have met national occupational standards for supported employment through their completion of a 12 month accredited training programme delivered by trainers from the British Association of Supported Employment.

The team’s success in progressing young people with learning disabilities into employment has been externally evaluated by the Centre for Economic and Social Inclusion who commended JET’s high conversion rates from programme starts into sustainable paid employment with clients from Hackney and Tower Hamlets.

Record Last Updated on: 22/04/2020

Local Offer


The Tower Project - Jet Service is a member of the following professional bodies: 

The service is delivered by a team consisting of:

  • specialist Tutors
  • Job Coaches and
  • Disability Employment Advisers

All Tutors hold relevant teaching qualifications.

All Disability Employment Advisers meet the current national occupational standards for supported employment and hold British Association of Supported Employment Level 3 qualifications in Supported Employment.

All Job Coaches have successfully completed certified programmes in Training in Systematic Instruction which is the in work support method advocated by the UK Government.

Time / Date Details

Time of day


Session Information

Monday to Friday
Times vary depending on the work placement opportunity
Term time only
Programme duration 1 academic year

Other Details

Who is eligible?

Many clients on the programme are aged 18 or over but young people aged 16 and 17 can be considered if they feel they would like to work and would be ready to undertake an extended period of work placement. 

The service is open to people with a learning disability and or autism that would like to work and would be ready to undertake an extended period of work placement and would not require ongoing travel training after receiving travel training support from a Job Coach.

Referral required?


Referral Details

Clients can apply directly to the Employment First Supported Internship by e-mailing Jamie Crouch at :

Please complete the following form and attach to the e-mail. 

Please call the service if you need help completing the form. 

Employment First application form - Tower Project JET (this form will download as a word doc for you to work on) 

What to do if you have a complaint

The service has a robust complaints procedure which is explained to students and their parents and carers during their induction into the programme

Copies of the complaints procedure have been produced in Easy Read and are displayed in the reception areas and in all classrooms.

How to Get Here

Local Bus Numbers: 277, D6, 205

Tube: Mile End

Train: Stratford, Limehouse

Disabled Parking: Yes

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Hackney's Local Offer website is a free and impartial service provided by the London Borough of Hackney in partnership with the NHS, local education, health and community services. The information contained within the website is available for the purposes of identifying services and provision that may be available to children and young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities.

This information does not represent a recommendation or an endorsement of a Service or Provider and neither does the London Borough of Hackney or its partners make any representations or warranties as to the accuracy of the information. Anyone seeking to use or access a service or provision is responsible for undertaking their own checks to determine the suitability and fitness for purpose of that service and provision. In no event will we be liable for any loss or damage including, without limitation, indirect or consequential loss or damage, or any loss or damages whatsoever arising from use or loss of use of data or profits arising out of or in connection with the use of the Hackney Local Offer.

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