Case study - Support for young people with a physical disability

woodwork benchC&K Careers regularly works with disabled young people.


LG is a young person with a congenital heart condition in resourced provision for students with physical difficulties, LG:

  • Cannot walk far without getting out of breath.
  • Takes medication on a daily basis to help alleviate his symptoms.
  • Did a shorter school day.
  • Missed a lot of school during Y10 and Y11 whilst in hospital, the resulting treatment meant he had to do certain tasks at a slower pace.
  • Expected grades were likely to be below his academic, practical and vocational abilities.
  • Developed a range of skills working in his father’s delivery business – dealing with customers, invoicing and developing a website for the business.


Our specialist careers adviser met with LG and his father on a number of occasions and looked at various options:

  • LG wanted to develop his ICT (software and hardware), website design, book keeping and business skills.
  • He hoped to have the opportunity to work outside his father's business with other people.
  • LG wasn't keen to continue in full-time education; he was unlikely to meet entry criteria for relevant courses.
  • With the adviser he looked at pre-foundation level training; ICT training with a local provider; registering with REAL Employment Agency, which works with people aged 16 and over with a learning and/or physical disability and getting help from Gateway to Care.
  • The adviser also spoke to LG's father on a number of occasions, talking to him about LG's options.
  • His adviser arranged for LG to visit REAL, staff there helped him claim Employment Support Allowance (ESA).
  • LG continued his interest in designing and making bird boxes and planters out of wood. His father provided him with work space in a unit within his warehouse.  Through ESA and a loan from his father, LG was able to purchase a work station and some basic tools. It seemed that
  • LG had a practical talent for woodwork but was constrained because he was not capable of heavy lifting or carrying the wood himself.
  • His adviser then discussed the possibility of self-employment using his 'bird box' hobby and gave him information on Live Wire and other agencies that could help with funding and business advice.


LG developed his business with his father’s guidance and now designs and sells planters and bird-boxes:

  • He operates from a unit in his father’s warehouse and his father’s courier business helps with deliveries.
  • His Gateway to Care volunteer goes in once a week to help him with his woodwork.
  • LG set up his own website and has sold planters and taken more orders.


LG is continuing with self-employment:

  • He qualified for Access to Work benefits and hopes to employ a full-time person to help in the business.
  • LG still has his good days when he can be productive and bad days when he has to rest.
  • Running his own business gives LG the flexibility to earn a living.
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