Internships for Disabled People

We Can Work Internship Programme

The We Can Work Internship Programme is Inclusion Scotland’s project which aims to make work more accessible for disabled people. Many disabled people want to work but the inflexibility of the workplace and difficulty accessing support can be a barrier to finding suitable employment. By creating internships, we hope to give disabled people a career boost in the area they want to work in.

You can find resources on for disabled people on applying for jobs, going for interviews, starting work, and advice on adjustments here and guidance for employers to use when thinking about how to make work more accessible to disabled people here.


Information for employers and interns

Inclusion Scotland is funded by the Scottish Government to create internship opportunities for disabled people in Scotland. These internships give valuable paid work experience to help disabled people develop their careers.

Internships are supported by Inclusion Scotland to ensure that they are accessible to all who apply. Application support is available to those who need it, and reasonable adjustments will be made if necessary from application to interview. Once an intern is chosen they will be supported to identify any adjustments they might need in work. This may involve an Access to Work claim. Employers will also be advised around adjustments and the Access to Work process.


What is an internship?

An internship is a time limited position that is of mutual benefit to the employer and intern. Internships on this programme will focus on a specific project or piece of work where the intern will be challenged to use and develop their skills in a supportive environment. Roles offered in previous programmes have varied but included research, events planning, marketing, communications and social media work. All internships offered by Inclusion Scotland are paid at least the Scottish Living Wage which is currently 9.50 per hour (As of November 2020).


What funding can we offer?

Our Scottish Government allows us to offer our support package for free to most of our placement hosts specifically those in Scottish Government, Scottish Parliament, the public sector or the voluntary sector.

We can also provide the funding to Parliamentary, voluntary sector and public sector hosts to cover the gross salary, employers NI payments and pension payments for the intern employed by the host, for up to 420 hours. Those employers therefore only need to provide appropriate line management support and necessary IT equipment, workspace, etc.

Private sector placements operate under a different model and there are some options (especially for Small-Medium Enterprises and social enterprises) please contact us for further information.


What do we not fund?

We do not provide support for the following scenarios:

  • Funding for individual disabled people to set up internships with employers.
  • Funding for employers to set up a placement for a specific disabled person
  • Funding for employers to extend current contracts of disabled employees on other employability programmes such as Community Jobs Scotland or Modern Apprenticeships
  • Funding to turn volunteer placements into paid employment opportunities
  • Funding to support housing costs of interns relocating for work.


What are the benefits?


  • A chance to develop your skills in work
  • Valuable paid work experience
  • Professional networking opportunities
  • Support to figure out the adjustments you might need in work



  • Learn more about supporting disabled staff and colleagues
  • An extra team member to help with a project
  • Gain an understanding of accessible recruitment practices
  • Opportunity for staff development


Contact Us

If you are a Public or Third sector employer who might be interested in hosting a We Can Work internship or a private sector employer who would like to gain lived experience learning by recruiting a disabled person with our support, please get in touch by email the Internships Team at

If you are a person who self-defines as disabled please keep an eye on our Vacancies and Inclusive Jobs Board pages for current opportunities.