People with disabilities often find it hard to access equal opportunities to employment. Humanity & Inclusion (HI) works to support these people. Meet Danwell Esperas, HI's Personalized Social Support Officer, who is providing people with disabilities with personalized follow-up.
Danwell is a registered nurse by profession but a development worker by heart. At the moment, he is working with HI as a personalized social support officer in the City of Valenzuela in the Philippines under the 'Forward Together' project. This HI run program works to empower young people with disabilities to access employment in Asia; specifically in cities in the Philippines and Indonesia.
Helping people with disabilities find a job
Through personalized social support sessions, Danwell trains project participants to build their confidence, increase their employability skills so that they are able to access employment opportunities and most importantly, reach their own personal goals in life.
In May 2019, Danwell supported a participant who is deaf who wanted to work for a manufacturing business. Together, Danwell and this individual underwent a journey from the initial assessment, making his personalized action plan, coaching sessions on resume writing and job interview skills. After two weeks of coaching, Danwell's participant was successful in a job application and landed a job in the manufacturing industry. Not only this, but he when he started his job he also began to teach his co-workers the basics of Filipino sign language to make the workplace more inclusive!
Continuous support during the COVID-19 crisis
Even throughout the difficult situations the pandemic has posed, Danwell has continued to coach project participants remotely as well as help to raise awareness of COVID-19 prevention messages. His coaching sessions have focused on stress management, the importance of self-care, and how to access financial assistance and goods which are being provided by the government.
HI’s Forward Together project also adapted its strategies to COVID-19 by providing cash transfers to project participants.