We know this is a big step for many families and we want to help ensure this transition is as smooth as possible. We truly believe there is a future and rewarding employment for everyone, and whilst that may look different for each person, it is our job to match skills and areas of difficulty with sustainable, fulfilling job opportunities. If there is anything not covered in our parent FAQ, please send us an email.
How do I know if my child is ready for an employability programme?
We take trainees from aged 14 and we know that regardless of age, some just aren’t ready but what’s important is that they are on a vocational pathway and begin to experience work in a supportive environment. Their confidence, self-esteem and skill set grows quickly and they begin to explore the future at a pace that suits them.
My child is academic, I'm worried they won't be stretched in a programme like this.
Our U.K accredited curriculum, ASDAN, has a diverse range of programmes which can cater to more academic trainees. We also run BTEC which is a higher level qualification that has a university pathway and that can be run alongside IB. In the case where ASDAN not BTEC are suitable then we are flexible to create something that engages the trainee. The vast majority of our trainees are on individual programmes because they deserve to reach their potential in a way that best supports their learning style.
My child isn't interested in cooking or the hospitality industry.
Around half of our trainees aren’t interested in this industry but we utilise the coffee shop and kitchen downstairs as a platform to learn transferable skills such as communication, interaction, following instructions and problem solving. The trainees are all happy with this as they don’t see it as the purpose of them coming to ‘work’ everyday. They may spend the rest of the day learning to code a website, doing marketing or create designs for tshirts to be sold in our online shop. We link employability with their skills with the goal of making it both sustainable and fulfilling.
Your qualifications are UK accredited but I want my child to have qualifications that are recognised here in Thailand.
We understand that which is why we are working towards having ASDAN available in Thai as well as the Ministry of Labour accepting ASDAN. In some cases, we ask parents to look at the bigger picture and think whether qualifications are necessary for their child’s pathway. Steps has 8 partner companies who agree to give work placements to our graduates which fast-tracks them into employment, without recognised qualifications. On the job training can often be just as valuable and is linked with better self-esteem and confidence.
How does it work if I want to try it out first?
All new trainees do a free trial day but if you need more time, we ask that you commit to a month of the programme at the end of which we will give an honest answer of whether we can support your child and we will share targets that we will be working towards.
How long does my child need to stay in the programme?
This depends on each child’s individual strengths and challenges but for those over 18, we endeavour to have them work ready in 12-18 months.
I don't want my child to work somewhere else before/after they graduate, can they work with you?
In this case we will always try our best to employ in house though as with any company, we have a capacity. Where possible, we create roles that can offer viable employment for our trainees.
I don't want my child to come full time, can they come part time?
Again, this is dependent on the child. For some, part-time alongside mainstream school works well, for others they really need to be with us full time to benefit.
My child has a lot of challenges, will they be able to access a programme like this?
We believe everyone has the ability to do something fulfilling and needed. What might be considered boring to some could be extremely satisfying for others. From stamping envelopes and packing boxes to writing blogs for our website and doing accounting, there is always a way to tap into realistic capabilities and sustainable job opportunities.
My child isn't special needs but has mental health problems/benefits from a less academic route, how would it work with them joining Steps?
The same as everyone else, they would get an individual programme. As a team, we see the trainees we need to push hard and we also see the ones who need a softer approach. By having a capacity of 30 trainees, we have both the staffing and time to see everyone as an individual and build effective relationships with our trainees. Where appropriate, we bring the whole team of trainees together for certain sessions such as soft skills or communication. It’s so busy with everyone’s personal projects and pathways that they may only see each other during breaks, just like a regular workplace. The mix of special needs and non-special needs is beneficial on both sides.
What does an average day at Steps look like?
It looks different depending on where you’re standing! Most days, the trainees come down to open the coffee shop which involves completing a whole host of tasks. After that, they branch off into their specific departments, perhaps with a yoga session to begin with or an art therapy session. There’s a great deal of flexibility and choice as that’s exactly what they deserve and need to grow.