Giving everybody the chance to work

Charlie Brady owner of Raith Fruit with employee, Debbie McLay.
Charlie Brady owner of Raith Fruit with employee, Debbie McLay.
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FIFE businesses which employ people with disabilities have been recognised for their work at an awards ceremony.

The Fife Business Diversity Awards celebrated the achievements of organisations and individuals who are committed to employing those in the local community who suffer a disability of some description.

Among those who received awards were City Facilities Management who are responsible for the recruitment and supervision of front-of-house janitors in Asda stores.

Capability Scotland which supports people with disabilities and health issues to gain and retain employment, and Real Living, a befriending service for people with mental health problems, also won prizes.

The big winner on the evening was Kirkcaldy’s Raith Fruit, which won the Gold Award.

Charlie Brady, owner of the family firm, said: “It was very nice to win the award, but it all just happened very naturally.

“We had two or three workers with different levels of disability and we gave them a trial and it worked out very well so we just carried on like that.

Deaf

“The way I look at it is that I’m deaf in one ear and have diabetes so would someone employ me?

“We get a lot of help from the Council and we can adapt so that an employee can fit in with us.

“As long as someone is keen and able that’s good enough for me.”

The company now has another award to celebrate having also picked up the Gold Award at the Scottish Business Diversity Awards.

Champion

Eunice Bruce, a disability worker with Fife Council, said: “Raith Fruit are a champion supporter of people with disabilities and health issues in the workplace.

“For many years they have been working with employment providers, offering paid and work placement opportunities for individuals.

“Charlie provides the personal touch by welcoming personally those working for his business, introducing them to a variety of posts to increase their experiences.

“Everyone feels valued, respected and encouraged to develop their skills and abilities within the team.”