Coffee with a cause: New Greenwich shop trains people with disabilities to help them find permanent jobs

Genesis Vega had no doubt that she would visit a new Greenwich coffee shop that assists individuals with impairments. Vega made arrangements to visit after seeing a post about the new business on Instagram. He stated of the new Coffee for Good café behind Second Congregational Church, “I saw that it was relatively near by, in a very lovely place.”

The 24-year-old Greenwich man described himself as a “huge coffee guy” who has volunteered to help individuals with impairments in the past.

“I’m always interested in trying out new coffee shops. And the fact that it was in conjunction with Abilis gave me even more incentive to come check it out and show my support,” he said.

Leaders of Coffee for Good stated in August that the organisation will begin in late April. They assisted with the introduction of a soft opening a week ago. Until the formal opening this autumn, the business will operate at half-capacity.

Coffee for Good is a community-based training programme that employs local individuals with disabilities in a variety of jobs within the business, from cashiers to baristas, before “graduating” and finding permanent employment elsewhere in the community.

“The goal is to bring them in, teach them the technical and professional skills they need, and then assist them get employment in the community so we can bring in more trainees,” Deb Rogan, executive director of Coffee for Good, explained.

For Rogan, the show was a deeply personal experience. She claimed she felt compelled to help her nephew after years of seeing him struggle to find work.

She proposed a programme to her church’s pastor, Rev. Maxwell Grant of Second Congregational Church, that would select and train people with impairments, such as her nephew, for jobs. The new programme would take place at a coffee shop and would train persons with impairments for long-term work.

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