A primary schoolgirl with Asperger’s Syndrome got a “job” at a supermarket after she astonished the store manager with an impressive letter.
After watching eight-year-old Carina Brooks tidy up the shelves on shopping trips with her mother, Linda, staff at an Aldi store in Glasgow, Scotland, jokingly suggested that she should apply for a position.
Partly influenced by her Asperger’s condition, Carina took the suggestions literally, went home and composed a formal application letter, which she then proceeded to hand in after school on Friday.
1. Carina Brooks, pictured, often tidies the shelves while on shopping trips with her mother.
I want a job at tidying up the shop, and when I get older run the tills. I know I am a bit young but I really want this job.
The store manager, Oliver Tingey, was duly impressed by the youngster’s effort. He gave her sweets as a thank you and promised to keep the application on file until Carina turned 16.
Both the girl and her 11-year-old brother Carrick have Asperger’s Syndrome, which is a form of autism that affects sufferers’ social interaction and often makes them take things literally.
2. After staff jokingly suggested that Carina should apply for a job, the schoolgirl went home to write this letter to the store manager. She said she knows she is “a bit young” but that she “really wants this job”.
Carina’s mother Linda said:
Carina takes things very literally so when she said she wanted to apply and I saw how determined she was, I didn’t want to stop her.
I thought “what’s the harm” — and I never thought that she would get time with the manager. I thought they would just brush her off!
I’d just like to say a huge thank you to him for the way he handled it.
Because of her Asperger’s Carina can take things to heart and she could have been hurt if he’d not handled it so well, but he showed her so much respect for her feelings and didn’t brush her off.
3. Eleven-year-old Carrick, pictured left with his sister, was so impressed with Carina’s sweets that he has started tidying the shelves too (left). Right, the children with their mother and full-time carer, Linda Brooks.
Carina’s brother Carrick was so impressed with the sweets his sister won that he has now joined in on the action. And the girl has been rewarded with a “store assistant” badge.
Store manager Tingey said:
It has been great to meet Carina and she has been a real asset to the store on her visits.
4. Store manager Oliver Tingey, left with Carrick and Carina, promised to keep the eight-year-old’s application on file until he can give her a job when she turns 16. Right, Carina with her store assistant badge.
Apart from pursuing the Aldi career, Carina is focusing on her dancing, singing and drama as she hopes to appear on stage one day. Her mother said:
I’m so grateful to the way Aldi have handled this. Going shopping with two kids can be very stressful and when both have Asperger’s this can add even more complications.
But the way Oliver and the rest of the branch have been with me, Carina and Carrick has been amazing and I am very thankful.
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