Cohort 2 - September 2017 - July 2018


Our Second cohort of Apprentices have just started at The Marriott Hotel.     Last year's cohort were very successful.  You can read all about their achievements in the Project Search Newsletter July 2017 (attached at the bottom of this page).  There has also been an article in Hillingdon News which is attached below.  

Here is a photo of our Second Cohort, taken at the "Pinning Ceremony" where they were presented with their name badges.


Here are some photographs of our second cohort of Apprentices, hard at work at the Marriott Hotel.  Each apprentice gets assigned to a particular area, for example, Concierge, Leisure, Banqueting, Engineering and Maintenance. They they rotate through the different roles.   




Our second group of interns are approaching the end of the Project SEARCH supported internship programme run by Meadow in partnership with the Marriott Hotel, Heathrow.

Project SEARCH is a transition to work programme for young people with learning disabilities and it should be their last year of education.  Interns need to be aged 17–24 at the beginning of the programme and have a current Education, Health and Care Plan.  Project SEARCH takes the classroom into the premises of a local employer and teaches interns employability skills on-site in a real workplace environment, helping them to make a smooth transition from education to employment. Each intern completes three placements in different departments within the hotel, building their skills so that they become work ready.

At 9.00 am each morning, interns complete a one hour Employability Skills lesson following the Project SEARCH curriculum, then leave the training room to spend five hours fully immersed in the Marriott workforce. While in their departments, interns are evaluated by Project SEARCH staff and receive feedback and job coaching to enable them to achieve their full potential within the role. At 3.00 pm, interns return to the training room for a final reflection on their day. They work on their communication skills by talking about what went well and if any issues have arisen, it is an opportunity to plan how these can be resolved.  Interns leave the hotel at 3.30 pm and are required to travel independently, as part of the programme.

We are very proud of the fact that five of our current interns have been successful in achieving the Project SEARCH goal of paid employment and three have already started their jobs.  One intern is working as a trainee locksmith, one is an Odeon cinema host and one is employed as a Nando’s restaurant host. In August, one intern will begin the role of Linen Porter at the Marriott and one has secured a horticulture apprenticeship with the London Borough of Hillingdon, which begins in September. Our remaining interns have job applications currently being processed and these will hopefully lead to paid employment in the near future. Once employed, our interns can access follow-on support if required, to help them maintain their jobs. It is this level of support that makes the Project SEARCH programme unique and ensures the success of our young people.



UPDATE - July  2018

Here are some quotes from parents of some of the interns from the past two years.  The quotes were gathered by Saimmah, Job Coach.   Permission has been granted to use the quotes below:


Quoted by Mrs Andrews (parent)

‘Ellen started in September last year as an intern at the Marriott hotel as part of the Project SEARCH programme. Aged 24 years, this was most definitely Ellen’s last opportunity to get support for employment via the education route. She’d already tried through further education colleges, all offering programmes to prepare young people with learning difficulties for work, but as each year ended, she was no nearer to achieving her dream of having a paid job. It was very easy to think that this would never happen.

 Thankfully we found project SEARCH and learnt about the partnership working that they have with local businesses. Ellen was successfully interviewed and offered a year’s placement at the Marriott Hotel. A careers action plan was devised for Ellen, identifying what Ellen was good at and what type of job she would like to do. Local employers were contacted and earlier this month Ellen was successful at interview and offered a job at Nando’s.

Ellen’s year with Project SEARCH has been amazing. She was truly integrated and accepted within the hotel environment; has grown in confidence and self-esteem; and with Project SEARCH’s support she is now beginning a new chapter in her life as an independent, working woman.’

Quote from Elizabeth – Ellen (Careers Advisor for ongoing support)

‘Ellen is absolutely loving her work at Nando’s, her employers have nothing but praises for her, I have been working with Ellen since she started her new career and together we have worked on developing her skills further to enable her growth within the company’



Quoted by Julie (Parent)

‘Shay has learnt new transferable skills at his time on the Project SEARCH programme and his confidence, self-esteem, independence and understanding of the world of work has increased so much, we are delighted to see what he has achieved. As a family we are bursting with pride that Project Search has equipped Shay with the skills to achieve the ultimate goal, to be employed in a job that he enjoys now.

I believe Project Search is an absolutely fantastic scheme which helps young people with learning difficulties realise that they are employable and have many worthwhile skills to offer, maybe it just takes them a little longer to learn or they need to learn in a different way and need patient people supporting them’



Quoted by Mr Mann – (Parent)

‘Jason gained a really good job through ‘Project SEARCH’, he is paid really well and is really happy in his role.’

Quote by employer (in Heathrow airport)

‘Jason is a great and hardworking person, we would say one of the most hardworking staff we have employed, we really support Project SEARCH programme and feel proud of having Jason as part of our team’



Quoted by Mrs Chambers (Parent)

‘Project SEARCH’ has helped my son in many ways, it has brought out great confidence in Jaden, I really can’t thank the project enough, I really wish it can roll off in other towns, even after completing the programme, the support Jaden has had afterwards in job-searching and securing paid employment has been phenomenal.’

‘It’s the most Perfect programme, excellent communication from staff, intense support provided whilst on and after completion of the programme, I really can’t find any faults.’

‘I would say this programme has changed my child’s life forever…. I’m so happy.’



Quoted by Mrs Handule (Parent)

Project SEARCH programme has helped Hashi to improve his interaction, I really never thought Hashi could ever get a job, the programme has given him a valuable opportunity to secure paid employment.

Hashi has learnt to become independent and even sent some of his earned money as a birthday gift overseas to his grandma, his grandma was so proud of him and how far he has got.


Quote from Elizabeth reg Hashi (Careers Advisor for ongoing support)

‘Hashi has been receiving ongoing support from me whilst in paid employment, his employers are pleased with him and the way he has managed to develop his skills, Hashi wants to grow in the business and has recently requested to move onto a more skilled position within the organisation which the employer has encouraged Hashi to apply for’



Quote from Elizabeth (Careers Advisor for ongoing support)

‘Charlie is doing well at work, he really loves his job and enjoys the frequent contact he has with customers, he has really settled in well with his team and feels this job really is a great match to his personality’


Quote from Karen (Parent)

‘Amazing, wow I just can’t believe my son has grown up so much. Thank you to you all, It’s really amazing he has a full time job which he is going to enjoy, I am short for words….so proud’