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Supporting Employment

MENCAP research states that approximately 8 out of 10 working age people with a learning disability have a mild or moderate learning disability, but less than 2 in 10 are in employment.

The many barriers faced by people with a learning disability to access employment include:

  • A lack of good quality support to get and maintain employment

  • A lack of support to build confidence and skills

  • Employers’ attitudes

  • Lack of understanding as to what people with a learning disability can do with the right support

We provide voluntary work opportunities for adults with a learning disability living in the Surrey area; for some people this will provide a long term job and for others will provide a stepping stone to paid employment.


How do our supported employment opportunities promote well being?

  • People with a learning disability have the right to feel fulfilled and contribute to their community

How do supported employment opportunities encourage understanding, acceptance and the involvement of people with a learning disability into the community?

  • We provide work experience for adults with additional needs in a nurturing environment enabling our members to provide a useful service to the community and feel valued

  • Job coaching including teaching work skills enables the people we support to move onto voluntary work in a less supported environment and for some paid work

The ReUse-It Shop

Our re-use and recycle shop offers job opportunities to young adults with learning disabilities, run by ALDAG, we can be found at 62a West Street, Dorking, Surrey. Tuesday - Saturday 9.30am - 5pm.


The shop provides a great opportunity to gain valuable work experience in retail and customer interaction, learn new skills and being part of a team, for some people this will provide a stepping stone to to paid employment.

Open Doors Café 

The Open Doors Café can be found in the Dorking United Reformed Church (a few doors down from our shop in West Street) every Thursday from 10am to 2pm during school term time. The cafe serves a variety of cakes, drinks and light lunches. 


The café is a partnership between the church and ALDAG and aims to provide fulfilling long term work experience for four adults with a learning disability by developing hospitality skills and in doing so to provide a valued service to the church community and local people.

Gardening Project

Every Friday a group of four young people meet to garden at our allotment where we grow flowers and vegetables for Café ALDAG.


We also undertake garden maintenance around St. George’s Christian Centre, for a local special school and in addition do some paid work for individuals who need help to keep their garden in order!

Cups & Co 

Cups & Co is our latest project currently in process. The coffee shop will increase and diversify the number of overall trainee places that we currently provide in our shop, church-based café and gardening team as well as extending choices for our young people.

ALDAG’s supported employment provisions all aim to provide an employment pathway leading to paid work in the community through real work in the young people’s community as well as longer term voluntary employment for some of our young people. 

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