Supporting Colleagues – A Year On

Supporting Colleagues – A Year On

A year on from the start of the first UK lockdown, we highlight some of the incredible stories that have happened since the pandemic started and showcase some of the fantastic colleagues that have joined Midcounties in a changing time for all.

From a number of different backgrounds and some beginning on a temporary basis, last year we took on a number of colleagues within our Food stores to help with the increasing demand that the lockdown created across Midcounties. Supporting our members & customers in an uncertain time, our brilliant colleagues came together to help out our most vulnerable communities either with home deliveries, click & collect or assisting in-store.

Read some of their incredible stories below which they have sent in:

Anjan, Newbridge Food

"I have been an electronic engineer for almost a decade, working for the aerospace industry for the last two years. Once covid caused restrictions to air travel, job stability was a thing of the past almost overnight. My job was at risk and I needed a supplementary income to support myself if the worst were to happen. A temporary role at the Co-op not only helped me stabilise my income but also helped me understand the struggles and successes of customers and colleagues.

It gave me hope and bolstered that community is very important especially in unusual times such as lockdowns, and Co-op embodies this principle. I was impressed by the range of ways Co-op supports the community, whether it’s delivering groceries to the vulnerable, raising money for good causes or just offering a friendly face to customers in-store. I am now happy to be part of a great team as a permanent employee, able to contribute to those who need it most and be rewarded with the satisfaction of knowing I have made a difference."

Amy, Aylesbury Food

"After what started off by a worrying 2020 when I became furloughed from my job it was weirdly the best year for me joining such a great team, being driven to do my best. I was never promoted in my previous job and to be with Midcounties for less than a year and to have progressed to where I am today, I am very thankful for this. I hope to continue to develop with the Society."

Franca, Cainscross Food

"I was self-employed for 6 years but due to Covid, I lost my business. I saw the temp job advertised as the emergency temporary staff needed so applied. I started work in Cainscross Food on chilled and then customer service (face-to-face) which suits me immensely as I am more customer community focused. I am now a permanent member of staff and enjoy building strong relationships with returning customers and gathering good customer feedback for our store. I love working here.”

Maura, Summertown

"My name is Maura known as Ellie and I had been working at Chozen Noodle in the City Centre for 3 years when Covid hit. I had just left to start another job but this did not happen, so I applied to the Midcounties for temporary work and was given a posting in Summertown in April 2020. I really enjoy working there making lots of new friends and I was approached with a view to becoming a full-time member of staff. I was happy to do this and was made full time in July 2020. This made me very happy as I no longer had to worry about where money was going to come from."

Sophie, Botley Food

"I'm Sophie and I'm 20. Before Covid, I was studying performing arts but when everything started to shut down I saw the vacancies arise within the Midcounties. I thought this was an amazing opportunity to broaden my own skill set, as well as supporting the local community as we had just launched the home delivery service. As time went on I was offered a full-time contract, which will enable me to get some savings ready for my next adventure when the world starts to open up!"

Louise, Winchcombe Food

"My name is Louise and during the pandemic, I moved from Wales to be closer to my family due to my brother having a kidney transplant. After leaving the restaurant Brasserie Blanc, I came to Midcounties as a temporary worker and am now employed on a permanent basis. I am a customer service assistant as well as a baker, which I have enjoyed as it is something new to learn during the pandemic.

I thoroughly enjoy working for the co-operative as I am surrounded by an amazing team and enjoy working hard and having a laugh whilst doing so!"