Over 80 Torbay and South Devon businesses attended an uplifting and inspirational Disability Confident event at the Imperial Hotel in Torquay today.
Disability Confident is a national campaign which encourages employers to be positive about the skills that disabled people bring to business.
Held in partnership with Kevin Foster, MP for Torbay, the businesses heard from local employers about how employing a disabled person has helped transform their customer relations and bottom line.
The event also celebrated the achievements of Tracey Evans who was awarded the ‘Pluss Achiever of the Year 2017’ by Susie Colley, Chair of Torbay Chamber of Commerce, in recognition of her strength and courage in finding work against the odds.
Tracey is a Support Worker for Shekinah Mission Leonard Stocks Centre in Torquay. She supports individuals with no fixed abode to develop life skills and independence.
Having faced a range of issues herself, including depression, self-harm, post-traumatic stress disorder, homelessness, domestic abuse and alcohol addiction, she now supports some of the most marginalised people in Torquay to build hope and meaning to their life.
Tracey said “I am overwhelmed. I am so thankful for the people who have helped me on my journey. But mostly to Danny, my employer, for giving me the confidence to believe in myself, so I can believe in others.”
Danny Crowley, Project Manager from Shekinah Mission added “Tracey has an exceptional talent with people and shows real empathy. She is amazing at helping others to turn their life around and to achieve.”
Sainsbury’s at the Willows in Torquay scooped the prestigious ‘Pluss Employer of the Year 2017’ award by being highly pro-active and flexible in their employment of Alex Wright, a bright and talented young lady who has cerebral palsy. The award was presented to Matt Deane, Customer Services Manager, and Alex by Kevin Foster MP.