Shop wins award for volunteer support

Bonding at the Aldingbourne Trust's Casino Royale employer ball
Bonding at the Aldingbourne Trust's Casino Royale employer ball

Shoreham’s charity shop with a difference has won a prize for the support given to volunteers.

Carolyn Shrosbree and her partner Jim set up SOLD, Shoreham Opportunities for Learning Disabilities, four years ago to meet the demand for worthwhile and realistic work experience opportunities for adults with learning disabilities.

At the Aldingbourne Trust’s first employer ball, SOLD was presented with the award for volunteer support.

Other awards went to Crawley Rugby Football Club for community support, International Logistics Group in Burgess Hill for equality and diversity, and Greenaway Residential in Crawley for Innovation.

The Casino Royale event was organised by WorkAid Supported Employment, one of the trust’s services that helps people across West Sussex.

Rachel Smither, manager of WorkAid, said: “This red carpet event was aimed at raising awareness of the skills of people with learning disabilities and autism and what they can bring to the workplace.”

Some of these skills were evident at the ball, with Andrew Pickthall as official photographer, DJ Jack Bruce and comedian Richard Maffahey.

An auction was held with donated prizes, including a Bentley for the weekend, Rod Stewart’s signed shoes and an England rugby shirt.

Exemplar employers, who work in partnership with WorkAid, showcased how they have been inspired to become ambassadors for the trust, promoting its work to other businesses and organisations.

An employer DVD was also launched, showing the benefits of recruiting individuals with learning disabilities and autism. Various international, national and local employers discussed their positive experiences working with WorkAid.