This week (26th March – 2nd April 2018) is Autism Awareness Week, and we wanted to take a moment to talk about our work with young people who may have learning difficulties or disabilities, such as Autism. Autism is a developmental disability which includes difficulty with social aspects of life and can prove to be a barrier to accessing employment.
At Choc affair we’ve been working with Blueberry Academy for over two years, a local organisation providing specialist support to adults with learning disabilities; the main aim of which is to promote employability and independence.
On the days that we have Wayne and Jibin in at work, the change in atmosphere is tangible. An unspoken sense of nurturing takes hold of us and we all have a better, brighter day. The guys on our team are softer, the ladies have an extra sparkle to their smiles and the office team keep popping downstairs to chat. There’s an indiscernible difference to our team spirit with that extra bit of added magic Wayne and Jibin bring.
Wayne started his time at Choc affair by attending with a job coach three hours a week, working with our packing team where his role was to twist and tie our farmyard lollies. After a period of time it was decided that he no longer needed the extra support in the workplace – so we made the decision to employ Wayne, and he continues to do a fantastic job. When asking Wayne what his favourite task was, he simply couldn’t decide and said: ‘all of them’!
Jibin also comes to help us out with the task of twist and tie on our farmyard lollies with his job coach – each week he arrives with his personalised apron and his cheeky smiling attitude. Jibin loves music and when we’re really lucky he’s sometimes in the mood to sing, which is when we have his renditions of some really classic tunes.
We’ve been very fortunate to have such wonderful individuals join our team and look forward to continuing to partner with the Blueberry Academy. We’d also like to thank the staff at Blueberry for their hard work and continuous support, not only for the young adults that attend, but for us as a company.
The Choc affair team x