The fortunes of Scope’s Eastbourne branch have been turned around thanks to Karen’s dedication and passion for the shop and her role as a tutor manager.
Although having experience working with charities, Karen’s previous employment was in night work at a care home, which meant that people were mostly asleep around her. Keen to rejoin the charities sector, and after more than two years with Scope, she is still genuinely excited about her work. Karen has a hearing impairment.
Tell us about yourself
I have a teenage daughter. My parents live near the shop which makes it handy for parking, plus I can drag them in to help out!
What do you most enjoy about your work at Scope?
Nearly all of it. I love the times when we exceed the targets and can share that with the team. I really enjoy the sorting and training too. My volunteers are very important; I have some great ones here.
What has the Scope shop enabled you to do?
It has given me retail skills, and I have started an NVQ course in taking those skills further through Scope. It has also brought my HR skills forward, working with such diverse people as are on the team and the customers that visit the shop.
It has given me confidence in my ability to a point where I want to share that experience with other staff by training and mentoring their progress. I felt a real feeling of achievement, but at the same time there is always a new challenge.
What’s the best part of your Scope experience?
Time to Get Equal week in 2009. It was the first event I had led, and all the staff got behind it. We did many different things, but one day we kept an exercise bike pedalling all day with staff and customers.
I got to meet Sharon Colllins, (Scope’s much-loved Managing Director of Services, who sadly passed away before Christmas). Her enthusiasm for Scope just touched everybody, and her son became a volunteer at the shop.
The whole week just snowballed, and we got so much back from it. There was a real warmth from everyone that I really enjoyed.
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