This empowering news comes to us from Madurai, India.
By the Collectorate in Thoothukudi, people are normally seen hanging out outside the Collector’s office. However, they now have a new place to hang out and that is Café Able. This café is run by 12 differently-abled people and has become a big hit in next to no time.
The team calls itself Dream kitchen and they are in charge of running Café Able. The café serves piping hot South Indian Vegetarian and non-vegetarian fare. They are good for breakfast, lunch and dinner items, snacks and desserts along with hot beverages and fresh juice. The food items are priced very reasonably between rupees 6 and rupees 70. The team’s unique ability to rise above life’s challenges and serve people is instrumental in drawing hundreds of customers every day. Since the day it opened on July 8th, the café now rakes in a profit of Rs 10,000 a day. This is nothing if not encouraging.
Café Able can seat 25 people at a time and it serves a twin purpose according to the manager, K Kannan who suffers from polio. “Seeing us run the place successfully is inspiring others and the experience of learning management skills and earning a living is empowering us,” he says.
This radical job opportunity was created by the District Collector SandeepNanduri who had received several petitions for jobs from differently-abled persons. The collector says “It is not possible to provide government jobs to everyone, and the idea of enabling them to have their own venture came up.”
Fifteen of the petitioners received a 45-day training in catering at the behest of a local NGO. Of these 15, nine had locomotor disabilities, one was hearing impaired and there were two accident victims as well. They have stayed on with Café Able so that they could make a success of the new venture that integrates people with their disabilities into a normal work culture.
The CSR funds from private companies and monetary help from the district administration helped the hopeful team to raise 30 lakh and the café was set up with all the required necessities. The team acquired cooking and serving utensils, baking equipment, power, water supply and gas along with a stock of basic ingredients.
“Managed by us independently, the café is self- sustaining. If we want to make a good profit we have to augment our services and sales. Since the response exceeded our expectation, we are confident that we will be able to scale up fast.”, says Satheesh, the cashier as he signs off.
Image Source: One Tamil News