Kathy's a Star at Making People Mobile

Kathy Malloch is something of a star in the world of Motability, the charity that helps disabled people get mobile.

The charity's Motability fleet provides cars to more than 550,000 qualifying people in the UK through more than 4,500 dealerships, each with at least one Motability specialist to help customers choose the vehicle with, if necessary, adaptations that is perfect for them.

Kathy has just heard that she is rated 41st among Motability specialists in the UK - a pleasant surprise for her but probably a foregone conclusion for her clients at English Ford in Poole.

Tom Croft, sales manager for Foray Motor Group, parent company of English Ford, congratulated Kathy on her achievement, pointing out that she is well within the top one per cent of advisers in the country.

"Every customer at our dealerships is special because everyone has individual needs," he explained. "However, Motability sales are really focused on the individual and his or her needs in a very particular way and finding just the right car and possibly advising on the best adaptations calls for a meticulous understanding of what's available.

"The process also needs patience because it can be a long process to draw everything together to a successful conclusion. Kathy's customers have a special need for their mobility and she has to be there for them all the time during the normal three year length of a Motability contract. It's a very dedicated role."

Kathy said she enjoyed the job immensely especially as some of her customers were very young and many couldn't even drive a car themselves.

"The personal contact is something I really value," she added. "I have been a Motability specialist for two years and already have 350 customers - I've enjoyed meeting every one!

"Motability cars are available to anyone who has the qualifying benefits and who is between the ages of three and 66 when they join the scheme.

"This means that you could be selling a car to a toddler, through the child's parents most probably, and that's not something that happens to other sales staff every day!

"Many parents struggle with severely disabled children and don't realise that their benefits could bring them the use of a brand new car for which everything is taken care of, apart from putting the fuel in. All servicing, insurance, and even new tyres are included in the price and qualifying users also get free road tax, too.

"People who can't drive can still have a car with up to three nominated drivers, although two is more normal, so that they can be driven by family or friends.

"Each sale liberates a person from mobility restrictions that might otherwise keep them housebound or only able to undertake irregular outings. Giving them the keys to their Motability Ford unlocks so much more than the car's doors."