[vc_row][vc_column width=”1/6″ offset=”vc_col-lg-1/5 vc_col-md-1/5 vc_col-xs-1/5″][us_image image=”81872″ size=”thumbnail” align=”left” style=”circle” has_ratio=”1″][/vc_column][vc_column width=”1/12″ offset=”vc_col-lg-4/5 vc_col-md-4/5 vc_col-xs-4/5″][vc_column_text]By Bev Jordan[/vc_column_text][us_post_date][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]Ben Hayman and Jim Pollard have been best friends for 15 years after meeting as teenagers in the Special Olympics program and playing doubles as a great tennis team.
Their new venture, Ben and Jimbo’s Delivery with Ability, is winning them a host of new fans as they put together boxes of fresh fruit and vegetables which they deliver across the Hills region on Thursdays.
Jim’s mother, Sue Walker says the social enterprise, which has been operating for just under a month, has been going really well and given Ben and Jim a lot of joy and sense of purpose.
Ben, who lives in Cherrybrook, and Jim who lives in Arcadia work alongside two support workers to pack the boxes and then accompany the support workers on the deliveries.
Sue says the idea for delivering fresh fruit and veg was floated by Ben’s mum Jo some years before but it didn’t go anywhere until earlier this year when Jim lost his job and she happened to meet a leading Sydney providore at a function which she attended with Jim.
She spoke to Mouhamad Dib about the idea of a delivery service and the logistics involved and a social enterprise partnership was formed with Mouhamad and Zac Onfray from In2Food.
It then took about five months to get the venture rolling.
“In2Food will select the best fruit and produce for them and every Thursday they go (to the warehouse) with their carers and pack the boxes to fill the orders. They absolutely love it,” Sue said.
The social enterprise provides employment, mentoring and social interaction and has given Ben and Jim employment, skills and confidence.
Jim says “I love working with Ben and packing with all the great people at In2Food.”
Ben says “(Thursday) is my favourite day of the week and I have my own business.”
As well as the top choice fruit and vegetables the Ben and Jim also have an arrangement with Pat Nati from Dural-based Nati Roses and so can deliver flowers with the order.
“The boys have had amazing support from In2Food but also from Jocelyn West from Kenthurst who acts as their marketer,” said Sue. She says that their new business shows: “that having a disability doesn’t stop you from developing the skills it takes to participate in the broader community.”
“They not only supply the highest quality fresh produce and flowers but also are proud to support workers with a disability and local farmers and growers.”
Sue says that when the business gets busier they will employ another person with a disability to join the team.
To find out more or to place an order visit the website https://deliverywithability.com.au.
Cut-off for orders is 2pm on Wednesdays.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]