Some guys are trying to make the society better, and I would like to share what they are doing.
On December 11th 2015, a new bakery ’60 Plus Bakery’ by Yamazaki & APCD (Asia-Pacific Development Center for Disabilities) opened in Bangkok. It is located along Rachawithi road; You get off BTS train at Victory Monument station and head towards west around 15 min, you will find it.
What makes the bakery shop different? They are managed by 10 people who have some kind of disabilities and two supporting staffs. Guys who suffer from autism disorder bake breads, people who cannot talk or hear sell them. The breads are awesome, I tried.
A guy from APCD said, “this shop is the milestone for our projects, because it is the collaboration of government organizations and a company.” They have done many projects to help people with disabilities, like establishing workshops or training centers, but they are not doing great so far. According him, the problem is the lack of bridges of training systems and companies’ demand. Although a trainee finished their program, quite a few can find jobs.
For Yamazaki, a Japanese bakery chain which has more than 80 shops in Thailand, this kind of project is the first try in the world. “I cannot believe we made it,” a guy from the company told me. When they agreed to do it, they thought it would be very tough. Now, after six month long training, 10 staffs with disabilities became qualified employees. They can work for Yamazaki’s other shops after one year OJT.
APCD and Yamazaki, they share two goals: First, making the shop financially independent; second, making the business big & hire more people who got misfortunes.
It is still one shop, but good start. “If we can prove disabled people can do it, we will make the business bigger,” the APCD guy said.
There are many government organizations & companies on the area, then the potential is big.
The question is, whether they can make this the phenomenon. If, if they will be able to open a new shop at Siam, totally managed by underprivileged people, that would be wow.
I don’t know well how it would be to have disabilities, but that would make people feel doomed somehow.
Thai regulation requires companies or organizations to hire l disabled person for every 100 employees, but it is not working well. Many SMEs don’t need to do that, and many companies choose to pay compensations, because often it is cheaper than hiring disabled, who need many supports.
The bakery is the place that people who suffered from something can prove they can do it. I want to see its success. Let’s buy breads.