We hear from our families that the transition period into adulthood (usually 14-19) can be a very challenging time. Maybe education is finishing for the young person and new activities and opportunities need to be explored. Our page has some guides and information to help you navigate this important period of transition. Please do contact us if the information you require is not here and we may be able to offer further suggestions.

To note: information about post 16 education, adult community learning and day opportunities have their own page.

Preparing for Adulthood Service (PfA) - ECC

The Preparing for Adulthood (PfA) Service from Essex County Council aims to help young people get ready for adult life.

PfA advisors give young people information, advice, and guidance about their options and information to make decisions about their future.

For example after leaving school they could go to college, apply for an apprenticeship, or look for a job. The PfA Advisor will ask the young person and others who know them well what they like and what they are good at.

Here you can also find the names and contact details of the PfA leads across Essex.


National Development Team for Inclusion NDTi- Preparing for Adulthood.

The National Development Team for Inclusion have a set of resources for Preparing for Adulthood including:

  • Person-centred Planning Tools
  • Employment Resources
  • Independent Living
  • Friends, Relationships & Community
  • Education Health and Care Services




Preparing for Adulthood - Independence, Training and Employment

If you live in Essex and are under 25 years old, SENDIASS offer a free, confidential and impartial service which provides support, guidance and information to young people who have special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

This link to their website offers information on preparing for adulthood.

ECL - Accredited and Vocational Training

ECL provides care and support to people to live safely and independently within their own homes and local communities in South East England. Their day service offers vocational training options, offering ASDAN accredited courses.

ECL also offer Inclusive Employment support for those people wanting to find employment.


Thinking Ahead Image

The Thinking Ahead Guide - Together Matters

The Thinking Ahead Guide is a tool for planning for the future designed for people with a learning disability. Written by Christine Towers and produced by Together Matters, it contains sections that can be worked on separately and individually in a very person centred way. With sections such as ‘Making decisions’ and ‘Building Networks’, it can be started when a young person is ready to start sharing their wishes and families are ready think about planning.

There is also an easy read version called ‘I’m Thinking Ahead’ that can be used by or with the young person on our easy read page Easy Read Guides – Essex Carers Network

SEND how you can be heard

ECC SEND - How can you be heard.

Essex County Council Special Education and Disabilities (SEND) has advice for young people with a guide about being heard:

This guide includes advice from Essex County Council on how to:

  • get involved in choosing what support you receive
  • have a voice when making plans for your life
  • give feedback on the support you receive
Get Set For Work - Inclusive Employment offer in Essex


Get Set for Work is a new inclusive support service delivered by Get Set UK for Essex County Council.

The programme brings new support services to adults with a learning disability and/or neurodiverse needs, living in Essex.

Working alongside Essex County Council and in partnership with ECL Inclusive Employment, Get Set for Work focuses on 3 key support services:

Employers looking to become more inclusive >

Employees struggling at work >

Individuals facing barriers to employment >