The Yeovil B&Q store has been awarded an Employer of Choice award for its commitment to employees with Learning Difficulties.
Somerset County Council’s ‘Aspire Support for Employment’ service hands out the award to Somerset employers who provide opportunities and support to their employees who have learning disabilities.
Aspire helps adults with learning difficulties find employment. The service then provides on-going support necessary to keep their job through training and job coaching.
B&Q in Yeovil currently has one employee who is supported by Aspire. Darren has been employed since 2008 and carries out numerous tasks around the store.
Darren said: “I love my job. I really enjoy working for B&Q; it’s great fun. I work for 18 hours a week, so I have money to buy the things I like.
“I like helping customers and meeting new people. I find if you treat a customer well and with respect they keep coming back again and again. I have regular customers that ask for me to help them out. I help them find their product and assist them through the tills, then I take their goods to their cars. All our customers and especially our older customers are very grateful for this service.
“B&Q are a good company to work for and have been very supportive to me when I have had problems.”
Paul, Manager at Yeovil B&Q said: “It is always a pleasure to see Darren in the mornings; he makes my day with his positive attitude and enthusiasm for helping customers. He is a role model for helpful colleagues within B&Q.”
Cllr William Wallace, Somerset County Council’s Cabinet Member for Adults Services, said: “Well done to B&Q. Their commitment to Darren, and to ensuring people with learning disabilities are given the opportunities they deserve, is something we should all strive to replicate.
“A learning disability should not be a barrier to paid employment, and these individuals can often enliven and enrich a workforce, while bringing a variety of new skills, passions and enthusiasm to a job, which shouldn’t be overlooked.”