Media Release by The Hon Sarah Henderson MP

Young adults with Down syndrome to benefit from pilot employment program

Joint Media Release with:

  • Treasurer Frydenberg

An innovative new pilot program funded by the Liberal Nationals Government to educate and employ young adults with Down syndrome launched in Melbourne today.

Treasurer Josh Frydenberg was pleased to announce with Assistant Minister for Social Services, Housing and Disability Services, Hon Sarah Henderson MP, $300,000 in funding for the Impact21 pilot program, which will be delivered by not-for-profit e.motion21.

The Assistant Minister for Social Services Sarah Henderson said support for this kind of program was in keeping with the Liberal Nationals Government’s broader package of services and initiatives to help people with disability find and keep a job, from Disability Employment Services to the newly established NDIS Participant Employment Taskforce.

“We welcome innovative programs like Impact21 which build the capacity of people with disability to participate in work,” Ms Henderson said.

The Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said e.motion21 is moving bodies and boundaries with its ground-breaking work providing musical and fitness opportunities for young people with Down syndrome.

“The Government is pleased to support e.motion21’s new initiative, Impact21 which will create wonderful and fulfilling employment opportunities for young people with Down syndrome,” the Treasurer said.

“People with Down syndrome deserve these opportunities and will use this new program to make a meaningful contribution to our community for not only their employer but to the broader community.”

The pilot will be based out of Melbourne’s Torren University, which will include a one-year work readiness program, including partnership with a national employer and a seven-week work placement program.

Thirteen participants with Down syndrome between 22 and 35 years old will participate in the pilot commencing Tuesday 12 February 2019.

The program involves extensive collaboration across industry, education, disability employment services, media, Government and the not-for-profit sector.

e.motion21 Founder, Director and Impact21 Leader, Cate Sayers, a prominent advocate for the Australian Down syndrome community, said: “The Impact21 Pilot is a ground breaking education into employment initiative for people with Down syndrome. It will demonstrate how adults, families, employers, educators and support services can work together to enable people of all abilities to make a valued contribution in the workplace and community.”