Lottery project helps Weston woman find hotel work
PUBLISHED: 19:00 19 April 2018
A Weston-super-Mare woman with cerebral palsy has found a job after more than eight years of unemployment.
Carol Hadley, who was born with the condition, enrolled on the Team North Somerset (TNS) programme eight months ago.
She joined the group’s West of England Works scheme, which is funded by The National Lottery and The European Social Fund and helps vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the Weston and North Somerset areas to secure sustainable employment.
TNS’s wellbeing job and work coach, Wendy Garland, contacted The Lauriston Hotel, in Knightstone Road, asking if they could offer Carol work experience.
She was given a trial shift working in the hotel’s food and beverage section, which she passed.
The 26-year-old has been offered casual, paid work of three hours one morning per week.
Speaking about her new job, Carol said: “I am so pleased to have been given this opportunity by The Lauriston.
“Eight months ago my confidence was so low and I struggled meeting new people, but that has completely changed now.
“It feels good to be working and earning some money, too.”
The hotel provides specialist accommodation for blind and visually impaired guests.
It was at risk of closure in March last year due to ‘limited resources’ but was saved by Weston College, who bought the hotel for an undisclosed fee.
Wendy said: “When Carol first came to us, she was not doing anything constructive work wise.
“The Lauriston has been so supportive in giving Carol an opportunity, they have fabulous facilities here. We wanted to empower Carol and it has been amazing to see her transformation during her time on the course, I think she is capable of more than she thinks is possible.”
Hotel manager, Nicole Blunden, will review Carol’s situation with TNS in a couple of months and decide whether to offer her more hours.
She said: “We cater for pretty much everybody here and we are flexible to the needs of all our staff. People with disabilities do not have limits, we just have to be mindful of their health and look after their workload.
“We are proud to have Carol as an employee here.”