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Unsung Hero

Name: Rita Mazgiene

Age: 35

Position: Malachy’s right-hand woman

At: Dolphin Fish & Chips, Dungannon, Northern Ireland

Nominated by: Malachy Mallon, owner of Dolphin Fish & Chips, who says: “Rita, born in Lithuania, came to live in Northern Ireland at the age of 19 in search of a better quality life.

At first this wasn't easy because of the language barrier, now 15 years on Rita not only speaks English fluently but with a local accent! I spotted Rita working in a local chip shop and recognised her talent immediately. I quickly established that with a little encouragement and additional training that we had a very talented young lady. We invested in Rita's education and upskilling  (as we do with all our staff) through our local college, the NFFF in Northern Ireland and Leeds, online, in-house and additional courses provided by independent companies. Earlier in 2019, we took Rita onboard as a business partner, which to date has proven very successful for both parties.

What are your responsibilities?

Initially I was hired to assist in the preparation and serving of food, this also included cleaning duties.

What’s your favourite part of the job?

Meeting customer demands and expectations. There’s always something new to learn each day (sometimes it's difficult to keep up with Malachy as he's always proposing something new!) I love the challenge of trying to improve on quality and service each day.

What’s your least favourite part of the job?

I suppose for most it's staffing, and it is for us too, but we have a philosophy where we invest in the team and their education and, in doing so, it helps empower our team.

What do you like about working at The Dolphin?

I don't know, it's difficult to explain. There’s just something about that shop, it has a certain feel or atmosphere about it.

How do you feel about being nominates as an Unsung Hero?

The recognition is nice, so I was really chuffed! But the fact that Malachy has invested in me and has now afforded me the opportunity to be part of the business has really helped my confidence.

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