We are creating a future where those that have disabilities are a part of their communitites and are responsible contributing members of society. We are creating an awareness for businesses to open their doors and see the advantages of hiring those that may have disabilities. Our vision is to see citizens of Kansas City actively involved in making positive changes for the future wellbeing of their community and it's people.
One step at a time, we plan to set an example by providing on-the-job training and paid employment beginning with 4 teens and young adults while also connecting with businesses, schools, and community agencies to ispire change. We hope that through our example and passion, others will join us. Already, we have inspired 2 other interests in starting this social venture in the state of MO for their communities.
Our story began through frustration. Founder, Jamina Bone was a special educator for a number of years and saw first hand the struggles students and their parents had in the fight to be accepted. The frustration grew when trying to create opportunities. There wasn't school funding for transportation or supplies, there was a constant juggling act with school responsibilities, and NCLB (No Child Left Behind) pressured teachers to teach academics.
Only 21% of adults with disabilities are employed while 70% of the entire adult population without disabilties have employment. When it comes to paid employment and early work experiences for our youth, there are very few opporutunities. They could stock shelves for a grocery store or work in a sheltered workshop housed in a large warehouse with others that have disabilities. Jamina left the teaching field in June of 2012 to begin an organization that aims to promote competitive employment and inclusion for those that have disabilities in the workplace.
Our board of directors consist of 2 former educators and 2 community members who believe in the vision and what it will do for the community. Within 3 months, we have already connected with schools, organizations, businesses, and a transition team
to collaborate and provide seamless transition for our youth into the workplace. It takes a village, and we believe we can do this for our future workers.