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  • Writer's pictureGerry Monaghan

David Henderson, Duty Manager, Lavery’s

“NOW worked with us to provide training and advice around how we can make Lavery’s a place everyone feels welcome.”

When David Henderson began working at Lavery’s bar in Belfast as a Duty Manager it was clear to him that inclusion is a key part of the organisation’s ethos. From gender neutral toilets to a lift that allows wheelchair users access to all parts of the venue, it is committed to ensuring accessibility for all.

As part of this commitment, David wanted to get professional advice about how best to support both customers and staff with a learning difficulty, autism or an associated health condition. Someone recommended he get in touch with NOW Group as the organisation works closely with businesses to help them provide an inclusive and supportive environment for both customers and staff.

NOW worked with David to provide disability awareness training to management and door staff that educated them on how to provide excellent customer service to someone with a learning difficulty, autism or health condition.

Lavery’s also availed of NOW’s supported employment service. The organisation’s dedicated employment team work closely with businesses to match them with job seekers who would be an assist to the team. Once a position is secured the employment team continue to support both the employer and employee to ensure it is a successful relationship.

Catherine Matthews from North Belfast had been working in Lavery’s for 2 years when she approached NOW to support her in her job. Catherine felt she lacked confidence in her work and found it difficult to follow instructions. As part of NOW’s relationship with Lavery’s they were able to appoint an employment officer, Tara McKevitt, to work alongside Catherine and David. Tara meets with them once a month and has supported them to develop Catherine’s role into one that she feels happy and confident in.

Speaking about working with NOW Group, David comments, “At Laverys inclusion is part of our culture and this includes making sure we are looking after all our customers well. I had been looking in to the needs of our customers and staff and wanted to get some guidance around how we can best support people with learning difficulties and autism and that’s when I got in touch with NOW Group.

NOW have worked with us to provide training and advice around how we can make Laverys a place everyone feels welcome. They have also work closely with us to support our staff who have additional needs, this has been great for us as it means we always have someone to ask for advice and ultimately will help us make sure our staff are happy in their role. We’ve found NOW to be great to work with; they have made everything easy for us.”

Contact NOW Group on: 028 9043 6400 or Email:

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