Oxfam in Skegness has been presented with an award from charity Action for Blind People, recognising good practice in employing a local partially sighted person.
The ‘See the Capability, not the Disability’ award nomination for Oxfam was made by Sue Ray, 53, who lives in Skegness.
Sue was welcomed by Oxfam in 1989, when she was facing the prospect of going totally blind with Best’s disease, a hereditary form of progressive macular dystrophy.
Oxfam developed her skills, giving her the role of shop leader in Skegness, a volunteering position. From there, Sue worked her way up to become a part-time paid shop manager. Sue has been provided with specialised equipment by Oxfam, including speech and magnification software which helps her carry out day-to-day management of both the shop and on-line store, as well as a team of 21 volunteers, assisted by a support worker.
Sue has also been supported by Oxfam in gaining a number of qualifications, including an NVQ and a two-year qualification in management.
Sue said: “Oxfam has focussed on my capabilities, not my disability. It is great to be part of a large organisation that cares and wants me to succeed.
“After 23 years of service with Oxfam, I am delighted to have this opportunity to give something back.”
Action for Blind People’s Employment Officer, Loraine Brown, said: “Oxfam has been fantastic in boosting Sue’s confidence. They’ve supported her from day one; there’s never been a moment when they’ve lost faith in her ability.”
“Every day we help many people with sight loss to gain and retain employment, whilst promoting good practice amongst employers. Oxfam is a worthy recipient of our ‘See the Capability, not the Disability’ award.” For further information about Action for Blind People’s employment support services, phone 01509 632 411 or email: Kim.Gutteridge@actionforblindpeople.org.uk