“I am now in permanent employment that I enjoy and things have completely changed for me in the past year”
A 36-year-old Airdrie woman has become the first to benefit from a pilot programme which is designed to support more disabled people into work and is being extended across Scotland.
Donna Moffat, who has been diagnosed with depression and anxiety, secured a job at B&Q’s Coatbridge store after being supported by Remploy, the leading provider of specialist employment support for disabled people and those with health conditions.
Donna said: “Being open about having depression really showed me that there is help out there from organisations such as Remploy. I’ve been transformed from someone who was worried about meeting new people and being nervous in big crowds, to serving hundreds of customers every week, having conversations with them and really enjoying it”.
Donna participated in the Remploy and B&Q Scotland Placement Accreditation Pilot, which aims to support into work people who are low in confidence and feel they would not get through B&Q’s usual interview process. In this case, the interview process is replaced by a working placement. B&Q Scotland and Remploy have agreed to work in partnership across Scotland to support candidates to achieve this accreditation and to allow B&Q to discover hidden talent through offering this placement.
Donna, from Craigneuk, said: “I wanted to get back to work after dealing with depression for many years had left me very low in confidence and had impacted almost every area of my life. I also had anxiety which made interactions in the outside world very difficult for me. “However, the staff at Remploy helped me to turn my life around. I had great support in areas such confidence building and highlighting my transferable skills and help with writing an effective CV, interview preparation and setting goals for myself.”
“I am delighted to be working. This job with B&Q has given me routine and structure and the means to earn my own money which has really boosted my confidence.”
David Brown, B&Q’s store manager, said: “Although she was nervous, Donna showed a passion for getting back into work. She is an asset to our store and is now a permanent member of our team. We have gained a confident employee who really cares about delivering great customer service and has an excellent work ethic.”
Lorna Smith, Remploy’s business manager for Airdrie and Forth Valley said: “When Donna joined us she lacked in confidence and to have watched her blossom over the time she was with us has been a pleasure and is the result of all her effort and hard work.”