Thursday 3rd December marked the United Nations International Day of Disabled People; this year’s theme in partnership with Tower Hamlets council was Access and Empowerment. The event held at The Ecology Pavilion, a unique contemporary space surrounded by natural wild surroundings, was decorated to the finest detailed. In its cosy but elegant classic British afternoon tea style, the afternoon kicked off with servings of a delicious selection of sandwiches and cakes served by JET trainees and their job coaches. Staff from our very own Ocean View Cafe served non-alcoholic cocktails featuring various fruity flavours.

Once our audience of 170 plus had enjoyed their afternoon tea and got comfortable, our chief executive Gerald O’Shaughnessy gave us all a warm greeting along with a welcome and introduction to Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs.

With the awards being announced and given out by Mayor John Biggs along with big smiles for a graduation style photograph, the venue was filled with a great atmosphere of smiles, cheers and applauses. It was great to see so many achievements being brought to light, with the awards being presented for the following achievements –


  • Completion of LBTH Pre-Apprenticeship Programme
  • Completion of JET Pre-Apprenticeship Hospitality and Catering Programme
  • People who have completed Pre-Apprenticeships at JET Social Enterprises JET Wiki Tech and JET Social Impact.
  • JET SET Ignition Traineeship
  • Supported Internship
  • Horticulture Qualifications
  • Silver Gateway Award


Once the awards were all given out and everyone was given their rightly deserved moment, the festivities did not stop there! With everyone in a joyful mood, acclaimed singer Mat Thomas along with his band performed an energetic, acoustic performance of various up-tempo covers (Bruno Mars, Daft Punk). Along with everyone enjoying a good dance and fruit filled cocktail with a choice of east London’s new tasty classics such as Mile End Mule and the Poplar Colada. We also had a photo booth on site in which various colourful wigs and accessories were available to wear to then take polaroid style photos in our very own quirky photo booth.

The event was attended by JET staff, clients and their families, Council Officers, Corporate partners, representatives from Education and Health and local disabled people accessing support services in the borough. The afternoon saw the training of these trainees put into practice in which a high quality level of service was delivered alongside with staff from JET service’s Ocean View Café. The event was undoubtedly an demonstration of how positive and how essential a service like JET and organisation such as The Tower Project is for people with a learning disability who live in the borough. Well-deserved and huge congratulations to our JET Clients and staff for all their hard work and efforts.

You can check out the photos on our Facebook page here – 2015 – International Day of Disabled People Event Album

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