We are a social enterprise charity. Our vision is for people with learning disabilities to be valued in the workplace, to reach their full potential and feel included as members of society.
Founder & Chairman Rosa Monckton, whose younger daughter, Domenica, has Down’s Syndrome, set up the registered charity to help young adults with learning disabilities find and retain meaningful employment.
There are 1.5 million people with learning disabilities in the UK and almost 94% are unemployed. Far too many are missing out on the basic right to aspire to a career, along with the wider social networks, better emotional and physical health, and increased independence that comes from having a job. They share the same aspirations as everyone else and they want nothing more than the opportunity to demonstrate their full potential.
Domenica was Princess Diana’s last godchild, and Rosa passionately promotes the late Princess’s belief that “everybody needs to be valued and everyone has the potential to give something back”.
At Team Domenica, we strongly believe that young adults with learning disabilities have the right to work, to lead fulfilling and purposeful lives, to have their individual gifts and talents recognised, and to feel included as valued members of society.
Based in central Brighton and launched by the actress Julie Walters in September 2016, we operate through a unique three-tier set-up of Training Centre, Training Café (Café Domenica) and Employment Centre. Through this we provide employment programmes to young adults with a wide range of ability, referred to as our ‘candidates’ to more accurately reflect and emphasise their role as people ready for employment.
We have already achieved an impressive 33% employment rate, more than five times higher than the national employment statistic (6%) for people with learning disabilities.
In time, we plan to open other centres along the South Coast, London and then nationally. We believe that we are at the forefront of a movement that will lead to real change in the lives of people with learning disabilities and the way they are perceived by employers and society as a whole.
Together, our mission is to help people with learning disabilities discover their career potential, to create employment opportunities and to remove barriers to work in local communities.
Team Domenica provides a range of employment programmes, with progression to supported internships, and wherever possible on to paid employment. Working in partnership with Brighton Metropolitan College, local employers, activity providers and charities, we are delivering an essential education, training and support service within the Brighton & Hove community.
Greater Brighton Metropolitan College CEO Nick Juba says: “The MET is proud to continue working with Team Domenica. Now in its second year of operation, the project helps to create opportunities for our Foundation students to gain employment following their achievements at college.”
“We are delighted to continue our journey with Team Domenica as we move from work experience to employment and we hope for continued success with the team.”
“We are extremely proud to be working with Team Domenica by helping their candidates gain valuable work experience here at Posh Totty Designs. We work at providing relevant projects that allow the candidates the opportunity to plan and prioritise their work and to develop together as a team. All the candidates we have encountered are a joy to work with and we are happy to provide as much experience as possible.”
“It’s a hard task for anyone starting out on their own, but with a fantastic organisation like Team Domenica behind them, these young people have a fighting chance.”
“Holiday Inn Brighton is delighted to be working as a partner with Team Domenica, helping candidates gain a valuable insight into hotel operations, and providing work experience that will lead to employment. As a General Manager, I am really proud to be associated with such a caring, motivational and inspiring charity. From day one the support has been amazing and we look forward to continued successes for years to come.”
“It is a pleasure to work with Team Dominica, giving candidates the opportunity to gain work experience and practise skills learnt in the classroom.”
“Hurst College is delighted to be working with Team Domenica. By offering work placements to local young adults with learning disabilities we hope not only to enrich their lives, but also the lives of our pupils as they continue to develop a sense of community responsibility. We are so pleased we have been able to support Team Domenica’s unique project.”
“We have really enjoyed having the Team Domenica candidates at Ricochet as part of the team. We have found meeting and spending time with the candidates really rewarding and we find the response from the whole office is positive. We hope the candidates are also enjoying being part of our team and are learning a lot.
“It wouldn’t be the same without the Team Domenica candidates now. They are part of the team. It’s great to know that certain jobs will be taken care of by the candidates and that you don’t have to worry about it being done.”
“When we were approached by Team Domenica and considered the Supported Internship Programme, as a business our experience was very limited. The key to the success we have had is down to the groundwork that was done prior to candidates joining us. The support structures and the guidance from Team Domenica has been invaluable in helping all parties make the internship the success it has become. The whole team really enjoy working with candidates, we have built a fantastic relationship that the whole team are very proud of.”
“Team Domenica has professionally assisted all parties to ensure a safe working environment and has been a pleasure to work with. I cannot recommend the work that Team Domenica does highly enough and hope to enhance the relationship with Brighton Harbour Hotel further.”
“We are delighted to have a Team Domenica candidate on board working in our kitchen team.”
“After being truly inspired by Team Domenica and their work, we decided to get involved by meeting some of the candidates. The Bill’s team absolutely love the candidates and they all have fun whilst gaining experience within a live working environment. Keep up the great work Team Domenica!”
We would like to thank all our donors, charitable trusts and foundations, who have so generously contributed within our current financial year. Without your support the essential work that we do would simply not be possible.
We also thank all those who contributed through our 'Virgin Money Giving' platform. From £3 donations to £5,000, every single pound helps us in our aim to get young adults with learning disabilities into employment.
Aminah Al Sabah
Bamford Charitable Trust
Forte Charitable Trust
Giovanni Emo Capodilista
Invest for Children Foundation
Polizzi Family Trust
Red Lynch Charitable Trust
Sigrid Rausing Trust
The Co-op Community Fund
The Childwick Trust
The Lennox Hannay Charitable Trust
The Wolfson Foundation
Garfield Weston Foundation
One Family Foundation
Big Lottery Fund