A special kind of Coles supermarket has opened up inside a Sydney school as part of the brand’s commitment to inclusivity.
Coles has established a one-of-a-kind mini store on the grounds of a school in what is hoped will have a meaningful impact on students.
The fully functioning supermarket has been installed at St Lucy’s School in Wahroonga, on Sydney’s upper north shore, where it will act as a learning tool for students with disabilities.
The shop will give senior students a place to practice work experience tasks like stocking shelves and customer service, while junior students will be able to practice shopping for themselves and helping their family.
St Lucy’s is an independent school for students with disabilities from kindergarten to Year 12.
“Coles at St Lucy’s provides a safe environment to teach our students about safety in the workplace and to develop the important skills needed for effective communication, collaboration, and interpersonal relationships in the workplace and beyond,” principal David Raphael said.
Coles chief marketing officer and co-chair of the Coles Accessibility Steering Committee, Lisa Ronson, said helping Australians living with disabilities was one of the brand’s key priorities.
“Our team is so proud to be supporting the mini store at St Lucy’s and we think the program is fantastic to teach students valuable life and future employment skills,” she said.
“We at Coles are absolutely committed as an organisation to increase the number of Australians we employ who are living with a disability”
Coles general manager and fellow co-chair of the Coles accessibility steering committee Martin Smithson said the supermarket was designed to provide students with practical skills.
“Gainful employment is a pathway to security and autonomy and as one of the country’s largest employers we know we have an important role to play,” Mr Smithson said.
“Coles is always on the lookout for ways that we can assist people with disabilities through providing employment opportunities through our partnerships with services like Disability Works Australia.”
Earlier this year, Coles was involved in the $2.43 million RecruitAble pilot scheme in partnership with the federal government that sought to create more job opportunities and inclusive workplaces.
The RecruitAble pilot is a partnership between Get Skilled Access, founded by Australian of the Year Dylan Alcott AO, and national recruitment agency Randstad Australia.
Originally published as Coles opens supermarket inside school for students to work and shop in
Extracted from Cairns Post