The purpose of this programme is to support clients with Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome, Dyspraxia & Dyslexia.

The aim of Engage is to mentor and support clients and employers. The primary objective is to help clients gain employment. This is a voluntary programme eligible for clients aged 16+ and is funded by the European Social Fund and Department for Economy. The programme is voluntary and client’s benefits are not affected when participating.

The programme started in April 2015, since this date we have case loaded a total of 82 of which 16 gained full-time employment, 5 have moved on to full-time education and 15 moved to Department for Economy programme.

The programme is client centred, each individual has an action plan created and tailored to meet their needs. As to date clients have had a variety of experiences such as training, accredited training, job sampling and 1 to 1 mentoring support.

We have extended our employer base to meet the requirements of our clients, as some have come with predetermined career choices. The programme allows better relationships and tailored training to suit the client and employer. We offer employers and their staff awareness training on Autism and the benefits of employing someone with ASD or other disabilities. We offer training to local organisations, the most recent being the staff from Stepping Stones Creche.

For More Information Contact

Michelle McClafferty


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What makes Engage unique and so successful?

  •  Voluntary
  • Programme designed to fit in around your specific needs & time-frame
  • Client centred
  • Extensive employer network to choose from
  • Numerous job sampling opportunities in various sectors
  • Mentoring & support
  • Continuous support
  • Improved health & well-being
  • Meeting socially with other participants
  • Widening your social network & developing new relationships
  • Better off Calculation (how working impacts on benefits)
  • Engage co-ordinator samples job roles before clients are placed
  • Essential Skills Training
  • Short courses to enhance employability
  • CV Service
  • Established mutual relationships with Key Stakeholders, Careers, Schools, Senco’s & Community Groups
  • Member of Disability Employment Network

Clients under the Spectrum demonstrate above average skills in some or all of the following areas:

  • High levels of concentration
  • Reliability, conscientiousness & persistence
  • Accuracy, close attention to detail and the ability to identify errors
  • Technical ability, such as IT & Art
  • Creativity & ability to think outside the box
  • Detailed factual knowledge & excellent memory
Learning North West 2022 organises regular social events. These events include:

  • Pub quizzes
  • Attendance at the disability discos in the Millennium Forum
  • Annual day trips
  • Food Savvy programme
  • Come Dine with me

Involvement with the Get Out Get Active programme also allows the group to meet on a weekly basis and take part in various activities with other disability groups.

This year activities included:

  • Boccia
  • Zumba
  • Wall Climbing
  • Participation in the Annual Boccia Tournament

Our clients are the Winners of the Annual Boccia Play offs 2019 at the Foyle Arena. Two of our clients participated in the Youth Programme in Slovenia during 2018: one client the winner of the Medal for excellence for City & Guild in 2014 and two clients recently took part in a focus group organised by Locus to provide input to the evaluation of ESF programmes for people with Disabilities.



When I joined Engage my mentor guided and supported me to develop my own Individual Action Plan to meet my needs and desires.

Through the creative teaching methods employed by Engage and the one-to-one essential skills classes, I have increased my self-confidence and have come on leaps and bounds in my reading and writing.

Before joining Engage, I felt isolated and did not socialise. Now through participating in the wide range of activities, I feel confident in company and have many new friends.

Engage organised various work experience trials for me and as a result, I have now been offered part-time work with a local retailer.