Ashfield social enterprise helps people 'who have faced challenges' find work

A social enterprise which supports people with learning difficulties and those who have been isolated during the pandemic find employment wants more volunteers in the Ashfield area.

Wednesday, 21st April 2021, 7:38 am

The 2020 Vision Community Enterprise Ltd organisation provides a helping hand to folk who may have found securing paid employment a challenge.

One person it has supported is 31-year-old Christopher Roe, who has Asperger Syndrome – a condition characterised by difficulties in social interaction and nonverbal communication.

He also suffers from severe asthma which forced him to shield during lockdown but decided to take up an opportunity on Facebook offered to him by 2020 chief executive Gemma Canlin.

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Christopher Roe, 31, volunteers for 2020 Vision Community Enterprises Ltd in Ashfield.

And although he’d previously held other volunteer roles, Christopher had been unemployed for five years.

But with 2020 Vision’s help, he has now been able to put together a future work plan.

He began volunteering for 2020 Vision at the beginning of the month and has since been delivering leaflets about the new business in the Sutton area.

Christopher, who lives in Sutton. said: "It is so nice to actually be able to leave the house and know you are helping people. It’s been great to get out in the fresh air and I'm enjoying the exercise.

"Before I did this, I was basically sat in the house every single day.

"It was driving me mad. I'm grateful to Gemma at 2020 Vision for giving me this opportunity."

Christopher hopes eventually to work in the new 2020 Vision Community Kitchen in Kirkby, which opens next month.

Catherine Ellis, the company ambassador, said she is delighted her organisation has been able to help Christopher – and hoped his story would inspire others to take up volunteering with 2020 Vision.

“He had previously volunteered in a soup kitchen, this was the kind of work he enjoyed best,” she said.

"We have recently taken on volunteers helping to spread the word. We help residents from all walks of life remain positive by offering volunteer positions to empower the minds of people, from all ages and backgrounds, but who have face challenges in their lives.”

"We are now looking for more people like Christopher who may have learning difficulties or anybody who has experienced challenges that has made finding work difficult.”

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