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New scheme helps adults with a learning disability into work

Three adults with a learning disability have been assisted into jobs with a funeral home and a crematorium in Sheffield.

The Co-operative Funeralcare partnered with the charity Mencap to help Andrew Rowland, 43, Sally Evans, 19, and Scott Adshead, 20, find permanent part-time roles at the Co-operative Funeralcare on Suffolk Road and at Grenoside Crematorium.

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Andrew, as funeral service assistant, and Sally, as catering assistant and housekeeper, work at the funeral home, while Scott has become a groundskeeper and chapel assistant at the crematorium.

Sector manager for the Co-operative Funeralcare and initiator of the programme Kevin McAlister said: “I got talking to Mencap when they became the Co-operative Group’s charity of the year for 2011 and I wanted to explore how we could help adults with learning disabilities get permanent jobs with us.

“It has been a great experience [and] I’m really pleased with how well they are all getting on and fitting in with the teams.”

Kevin worked with Mencap’s employment manager Richard Wormwell to develop a suitable programme. Fifteen applications were received and an interview day, which saw the applicants given tours of the funeral home and crematorium, was held. Applicants were then invited to spend a day working before the jobs were offered to Andrew, Sally and Scott.

Richard Wormwell added: “We know that people with a learning disability want to work, but can find it more difficult to get a job. It has been great to work with the Co-operative to enable Andrew, Sally and Scott to find meaningful employment.”

Image: (L-R) Andrew Rowland, Glynn Jones, Scott Adshead, Phil Heseltine and Sally Evans.

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