An Antrim teenager is enjoying his new found role at a local supermarket.
Thirteen-year-old Jude Patton from Antrim has struck up a great relationship with Kirstie Ainsworth and colleagues in Asda Antrim and now has his own Asda worktop and name badge so he can help colleagues while his family are shopping.
Jude and Asda colleague Kirstie met when Jude’s Aunt Elizabeth asked Kirstie if Jude, who has autism, could help her tidy up some of the shelves. They’ve now formed a firm friendship, so he helps her during the family’s regular visits and the Asda top and name badge make him feel like part of the team.
Jude’s dad Cyril said: “Kirstie has been brilliant with him; they get on well and I think what she’s done for Jude should be recognised. He loves going down to the store and looks forward to putting on his Asda top and name badge. He really enjoys tidying the shelves and they do price checks together too. Jude has autism and ADHD, so he tends to get fixated on something for a period of time. When we went shopping, Jude was more interested in tidying the shelves, so the way Kirstie was chatting and smiling with him even before she took him under her wing was brilliant.”
Kirstie said: “We met last year when I was filling out displays and this little boy came over and started helping of his own volition. His aunt who was with him came over and asked if I minded if he helped me. I checked with our general store manager Robert Ryans and he now comes in with his parents Cyril and Julie or his aunt Elizabeth every other Saturday.”