All they wanted was to help their special needs child become more independent.
Who knew that this simple desire would lead to the opening of a special needs school and a Western food cafe?
Founded by Faraliza Zainal and Ali Dawood, My Inspiring Journey Special Education Hub (MIJ) was opened in 2011 to help their son, Mohd Ashraf Mohd Ali.
Ashraf, 18, is diagnosed with autism and had daily meltdowns.
Peaked interests in F&B industry opened Ashraf’s Cafe
Prior to enrolling into MIJ, some of the students have had experience in the food and beverage (F&B) industry in their previous special education schools.
Others, on the other hand, are inclined towards customer service and love meeting people and social interaction.
However, both groups of trainees either didn’t manage to gain employment upon graduation, were employed for a short-term period, or weren’t given many opportunities.
These factors were the reasons why MIJ set up Ashraf’s Cafe.
The cafe aims to provide real-life work experience and a safe environment for the trainees to develop their skills.
Launched on July 1, the cafe currently has nine full-time staff and five special needs trainees specialising in customer service, food preparation and table waiting.
For full article, please visit: https://mothership.sg/2018/08/ashrafs-cafe-autism/