Delicious Spoonfuls’ main goal is to empower and expand the lives of people with disabilities through training and employment.
To us this is more than just an assertion, its deeply rooted in our very soul to change the perceptions of how people with disabilities are viewed in our society.
Delicious Spoonfuls started with a dream. We saw our son Adir, with Down Syndrome who is very high functioning but had very few job opportunities after high school. Adir regularly watches the food networks with us together and he was always telling the master chefs how to cook their food. Our son was so inspired that he worked in a Culinary program and volunteered with other individuals with special needs starting in High School. Chef Helen, his mom, worked with students with special Needs for many years in a local Elementary school. His dad, “Dr.” Rob worked with the most severely disabled in his career.
We knew that a great difference could be made by pooling all that we knew along with our resources within the field to turn it all around not just for our son’s sake but for others with special needs.
Since I was a chef, and educator along with Rob being an educator we thought that having people with disabilities work within a restaurant and ice cream parlor would offer the best functional role modeling experience around. It would offer people with disabilities serving food, being innovative, and creative. Learning customer service, work as greeters, train to be sous chefs, wait tables and the opportunities would be endless.
However, we needed more research so in the late winter and early spring of 2017 Three people came down from Michigan: Linda and Mark Joseph and Harriet Cooper. Each of them heard our goals and told us about the Soul Café in West Bloomfield, Michigan. So, in early June we drove up to Michigan to experience this great project and what we discovered dazzled our whole being. We saw people with disabilities working side by side with their typical peers in an integrated setting. We observed a great abilities center offering families seminars on every topic pertinent to their needs. Clients were creating art projects learning about science and the list had no limits to the subjects being offered. We were inspired by meeting Rabbi Levi Shemtov, his wife Bassie, and the rest of the staff and asking hundreds of questions that we came home and set the record straight for this to be our model of our company.
We did additional research and saw that there were many establishments throughout the country employing people with disabilities in every industry. So in that regard doing all of the research and starting our incorporation we created Delicious Spoonfuls and went with the motto “Just like food is delicious to the palate so is the learning we attain.”
At Delicious Spoonfuls we want to focus on four key objectives.
- Employing People with disabilities to have a delicious experience that is warm and inviting.
- Teaching the necessary skills with support and security that will develop confidence.
- Developing respect along with honor that reflects back to their fellow employees and customers
- Turning around how people with disabilities are viewed. Not focused on their disability but rather on their abilities.