-14 Aug. 2019

EMPOWERING LIVES – SUPPORTING DISABILITIES IN THE WORKPLACE

Each year our management trainees participate in community investment projects. The aim of the challenge is to identify, plan and deliver a project which will leave a lasting legacy in the local community in support of the aims of the Willmott Dixon Foundation, set-up with a ‘purpose beyond profit ethos’.

Equality in the Workplace

This year management trainee, Callum Barnes is heading up the challenge for Interiors. As a member of the equality, diversity and inclusion committee, Callum is very passionate about equality in the workplace and strongly believes that everyone should be able to enjoy a fair place in the society regardless of their gender, age, race and disabilities.

Research has shown that:

  • People with disabilities have an employment rate that is 29.9 percentage points lower than that of people without disabilities (Parliament, 2019)
  • In 2018 there were approximately 360,000 registered blind and partially sighted people of working age in the UK (NHS, 2019)
  • Blind and partially sighted people are significantly less likely to be in paid employment than the general population or other disabled people (RNIB, 2015)
  • Blind and partially sighted people need specialist support on their journey towards employment (RNIB, 2015)

These statistics show that often disabled people are either out of work or face challenges seeking employment, which has encouraged Callum to develop real passion to use his trainee challenge to help support better workplace opportunities for those who are registered blind and disabled.

Supporting Social Enterprise

We are proud to announce that we have teamed up with CLARITY & Co. – one of the UK’s foremost social enterprises having been founded in 1854.

CLARITY & Co. generates over 10,000 employment days for people with disabilities or long-term health conditions through the manufacture of its eco-ethical and everyday bath and beauty brands – The Soap Co., BECO. and CLARITY. The social enterprise aims to achieve this without compromise, and continually strives to develop both sustainable and eco-friendly products which can be found in national retailers, premium department stores or online.

CLARITY & Co.’s luxury bath and beauty brand The Soap Co. is designed for good with its eco and bee friendly collection and 100% natural bath and body oils sold through iconic department stores, Fortnum & Mason and John Lewis & Partners – as well as online at Next and Fabled by Marie Claire. Its more playful, eco and water saving sister brand BECO. standing for Better Considered has made real headway in national retailers including: Boots, Waitrose, Sainsbury’s, Co-op and online at Ethical Superstore, with it’s affordable Argan Oil Shampoo bar launching this summer.

As part of the challenge, we will be refurbishing the factory where these brands are produced which needs an uplift to make the building DDA compliant and improve facilities for the staff members to increase productivity and wellbeing. This will include; uplifting meeting rooms to create better space for selling products that showcase their legacy, a more welcoming reception area, disabled access points and improvements to the existing canteen to be created into a usable community hub and social space. This will also help cater for cooking classes for the staff members to enjoy.

Being a social enterprise and the challenges that come with it, a key phase of this challenge is to support CLARITY & Co.’s business model and help give their products longevity. Various events will take place to help raise the social enterprise’s profile as well as support for product development.

Purchasing these products will help pay to employ people with disabilities – purchase via our discount code link here https://thesoapco.org/discount/TeamWD10

 

Making a Social Impact

The challenge is a fantastic way of embedding the key principles of Social Value into our management trainees and allowing them to experience first-hand the challenges and rewards of managing a project that leaves a legacy in the local community.

Willmott Dixon Interiors, management trainee Callum says: ‘‘Partnering with CLARITY & Co. aligns with our values and what we believe in as a business. This is part of our ongoing legacy to support the community in which we work in. Equality in the workplace is key to open up opportunities for everyone and the project will help make a difference to the fantastic people who create such wonderful products with their everyday challenges’’.

Help Support your Local Community

We welcome your support in order to make the biggest impact to the local community. To volunteer your time, or to donate labour and materials, contact Callum.Barnes@willmottdixon.co.uk and if you would like learn more about CLARITY & Co.’s brands please visit www.thesoapco.org and www.BECO.UK

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