THE FAMILY of a man with Down’s Syndrome have praised a social worker for helping him pick up his first payslip.
George Allport works part-time at Hillers Farm Shop near Alcester and having passed his trial period has now been taken on as a permanent member of staff.
The 22-year-old had previously done work experience at a farm but getting wages and a payslip is a first for him and a ‘real achievement’.
The Allports have praised Patrice Marx, the Worcestershire County Council social worker who helped him make the transition to adult life.
George went to mainstream school until he was ten and then attended Derwen in Shropshire, a residential college for students with learning difficulties, where he won the
Emma Briscoe cup for achievement in hospitality and housekeeping. He also met his long-term girlfriend there, who also has Down’s Syndrome and lives in Staffordshire.
He now attends Warwickshire College where he studies hospitality and catering three days a week, as well as doing a day’s voluntary horticulture work in Studley.
After taking his college portfolio to the Hillers interview, he was offered a job on the spot and started work the same day.
George said: “I like everything about my job and the people I work with are really nice. Getting my first ever wages was great.”
His mom Julia, a retired teacher, said she was ‘extremely grateful’ for the support of the ‘smashing’ social worker who helped inspire hope and ambition in George for his adult life.
“George mixes well with the other staff, they absolutely love him – he’s such a character.
“I’m very proud, he’s doing really well. George wants to leave home and live independently, and that’s the next step he’s working towards.”
Coun Sheila Blagg, responsible for adult social care, said: “We want to support more people with a learning disability to find paid work and are developing plans for how we will make this happen. George’s hard work and determination has resulted in paid employment at a local farm shop, of which he and his family should be rightly proud.”