Jon Sawford is Director of Services at Whizz-Kidz, a national charity that supports young wheelchair users with vital mobility equipment and life skills services. A key element of Whizz-Kidz life skills services is to offer an Employability Programme, for which Jon is responsible. The programme addresses the disability employment gap by supporting young wheelchair users to develop the key skills and experience they need in the work place. The Charity facilitates work placements for young wheelchair users and engages with businesses and organisations to raise their disability awareness, helping them remove some of the barriers that prevent disabled people from finding employment in those sectors.
Before joining Whizz-Kidz in 2016, Jon was Head of the SMART metering transformation at SSE, and also spent a number of years working in senior roles in financial services at Direct Line and internationally for Belron International, the worlds largest automotive glass replacement company.
Jon is passionate about enabling every person to have the opportunity to use their potential fully without stereotypes and prejudices stopping this from happening. Jon was formally trained as a HRBP by Sainsbury’s and learned very quickly the advantages of making reasonable adjustments at Sainsbury’s to enable people to work who could not find employers who were willing to support them. By taking a much more proactive approach to employment and looking at each individual potential employee’s requirements, he was able to significantly reduce staff sickness, turnover and by having happy motivated employees, improve customer services measures.
Jon is also a keen traveller and enjoys studying up on potential locations to visit well off the normal tourist normal routes in his spare time.