Nowton Park Nurseries parent organisation Realise Futures wins special accreditation
An organisation which provides specialist support to people with disabilities to find and keep employment has been awarded the new Social Enterprisde Disability Employment Mark.
This recognises Realise Futures as a good example in the supported business sector.
The organisation which operates Nowton Park Nurseries is one of only seven UK organisations to receive the SEDEM.
The new mark has been developed by Social Enterprise Mark CIC following discussions with the Department for Work and Pensions.
Realise Futures operates in Suffolk and Essex and specialises in supporting people with disabilities or those who are disadvantaged.
It provides employment, training, learning and development, employing around 290 people, of whom 41 per cent have a disability.
Sally Butcher, managing director of Realise Futures, said: "We are so pleased to be recognised as one of the pioneering businesses to receive the new mark in recognition of the support we provide to enable disabled people to find and maintain meaningful employment.
"It is our social mission to increase the economic participation of people in the East of England who are disabled or disadvantaged and we continue to measure our success on the positive impact we have on the lives of people we help and support."
Lucy Findlay, managing director of Social Enterprise Mark CIC, said: "We hope this accreditation will become a yardstick for businesses that wish to prove their credentials in creating the most supportive environment for employing disabled people, as well as demonstrating their social value."
Realise Futures has been providing community learning in Suffolk for more than 25 years and runs more than 100 adult community learning courses from centres in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds, Stowmarket, Newmarket and Lowestoft.It covers maths and English, computer and technology skills for work, health and well being and family learning.
The Nowton Park Nurseries grows plants within the Victorian walled garden at Nowton Park and there is a gardening maintenance team which carries out a range of grounds care services.
Other services in Suffolk include a café in Ipswich and a social firm making outdoor furniture.There is also a wholefood business in Woodbridge.