Garth McCreedy wins WOW award

Home Depot employee Garth McCreedy was honoured with Community Living B.C.'s Widening Our World (WOW) award on Feb. 26.

Home Depot employee Garth Mcreedy (right) was honoured with Community Living B.C.'s Widening Our World (WOW) award on Feb. 26 for his leadership in inclusion.

Home Depot employee Garth Mcreedy (right) was honoured with Community Living B.C.'s Widening Our World (WOW) award on Feb. 26 for his leadership in inclusion.

To Home Depot customers, he’s the man who helps them find the right aisle.

To his golf buddies, he’s a pro.

To Community Living B.C. (CLBC), Garth McCreedy is an Inclusion Champion.

McCreedy was honoured for his most recent accolade at a ceremony at Home Depot on Feb. 26, surrounded by coworkers and friends.

Of over 50 nominees, McCreedy was one of four people in B.C. who have been recognized with a Widening our World (WOW) Award this year. The awards celebrate individuals who are helping to strengthen inclusion across the province.

The WOW awards are just one of CLBC’s initiatives to help fulfill their vision of a future where all people have a strong voice in society and are recognized as contributing members of their communities.

“This vision takes leadership, and Garth – you are one such leader,” CLBC CEO Seonag Macrae said to the group who had gathered in the kitchen and bath department.

McCreedy’s nomination was submitted by his friend and coworker Eddy Solla.

Solla, who has a developmental disability, started at Home Depot back in March 2015. While McCreedy trained him in the various store departments, they discovered a mutual interest in sports.

Solla, a gold medalist in wheelchair racing, is currently training to qualify in shot-put and javelin for the 2016 Summer Paralympics in Brazil. But he had never tried golf until he met McCreedy, who quickly took him out onto the green.

“I nominated Garth because he’s been a great mentor to me, and someone who I’ve enjoyed spending time with,” Solla explained.

“I didn’t think I was doing anything unusual. I didn’t think I was doing anything that deserved an award,” McCreedy said. “Eddy’s a great man and a good friend.”

But it’s the small acts of humble, welcoming people like him that make a world of difference.

Chilliwack Home Depot is one of many local businesses recently recognized for their commitment to inclusive employment. Organizations like the Chilliwack Society for Community Living (CSCL) and CLBC offer programs to connect individuals with developmental disabilities with local, meaningful work.

“Hiring people with diverse abilities has always been a true value for us,” Home Depot manager Kevin Vandenbosch explained. He congratulated McCreedy for consistently inspiring the associates and customers he interacts with.

MLA Laurie Throness was also present to commend McCreedy for his award and Home Depot for their exemplary hiring practices that will ensure a diverse, dedicated and successful talent pool for years ahead.

Learn more about this year’s WOW award winners at communitylivingbc.ca.