Burton Street Foundation
The Burton Street Foundation is helping 100 adults with learning difficulties in Sheffield find work, through its Enterprise 100 scheme.
The Burton Street Foundation is a thriving community enterprise in Sheffield. It provides work experience for young offenders and employment training for adults with learning difficulties, as well as running a range of business enterprises like a gym, cafe and recording studio.
In 2015 Burton Street was awarded a grant from the Power to Change Trust, giving them the capital to take on and refurbish the Bamforth building, an ex-furniture factory, located near to their current buildings.
This impressive new space has enabled Burton Street to launch Enterprise 100, an ambitious scheme to help 100 adults with learning disability into employment over three years, bringing Sheffield’s numbers up to the national average – 2013/14 figures showed that Sheffield currently falls behind the national average at 3.6% compared to 7%.
There are many advantages to employing adults with learning disabilities and part of Burton Street’s role is to educate other businesses and organisations about these benefits, as well as training their clients through person centred learning.
Clare Mappin, Managing Director of Burton Street said:
“We believe that Enterprise 100 could have positive effects to individuals’ lives and businesses approach to employment. We have a real hidden market here, a whole work force of people who want to work, can work and will work, they just need the opportunity and to be taken seriously as candidates for roles”
“Our aim is, of course, to get 100 adults with learning disabilities into employment but we won’t stop there. Anyone who has a learning disability, who wants to work we will support and enable them to find employment. Employment is part of people’s self-esteem, development and identity, we take pride in the work we do, so why should it be any different for people with learning disabilities?”
The opening of the Bamforth building has allowed the Burton Street Foundation to provide a classroom environment and also opened up new opportunities for work placements, including working at the new café and reception. It has also meant an increase in engagement with businesses, which may be able to provide placements in the future to Enterprise 100 clients.