Meet the people who are creating something beautiful from a simple cup of coffee.
Frapp & Capp Café in Bankstown is a very special place. As an initiative of Tender Loving Care (TLC) Disability Services, it’s a movement which challenges the norm, while advocating for equity and championing the cause for inclusivity.
It’s the perfect example of the organisation’s commitment to bridging the employment gap for individuals with disabilities, ensuring they receive fair award wages as well as opportunities suiting their individual interests and skill sets. At Frapp & Capp Cafe, the sky’s the limit.
“We opened up this social enterprise cafe to train people with a disability to have barista skills and to give them a sense of empowerment and somewhere to come and work and have ownership,” explains Laura Cowell, CEO Australian Operations at TLC Disability Services.
“One day I want to open my own coffee shop,” employee and barista, Rawad, says. “Every time I wake up in the morning, I have a paper on my mirror, and I wake up and I look at my goals and I tick the goals I do. And this is my goal, working here.”
When Yasser Zaki, Global CEO of TLC Disability Services met Rawad’s mum, she was looking for something better for her son. “I want my son to do something meaningful,” she told Yasser. “But no one is giving him the opportunity.”
At the time, Rawad was struggling to connect with the outside world and was living a very quiet life. “And then you look at him now,” Yasser says. “He’s the star (in the cafe)! He wakes up at 6am in the morning, opens up at 7am. He drives it!”
Yasser goes on to explain that the passion evident in baristas Rawad and Salim, is a result of years of work and training.
“You get confident when you’re good at what you do and that’s what we’re trying to do,” he says. “You build the guys to have a skill set, to be confident to deliver the outcome.”
Amera Zaki, National Customer Care Manager, TLC Disability Services says the goal is to understand what people actually want, who is in their life to help support their goal and what TLC can do to help them achieve it.
“The coffee shop was a great incentive,” she says. “It wasn’t just throwing them in the deep end. It’s sitting with them and understanding money management skills, travel training, communication skills, resume writing, computer skills. All these little steps to make sure that they were right for the position and that this was something that they wanted to do and pursue.”
And the results are evident in the smiles on Rawad and Salim’s faces.
“I didn’t know how to make coffee the first time,” Salim says. “If it wasn’t for them, this wouldn’t be here for us. We love TLC. They’re like family to us.”
It’s incredible how far a little tender loving care can go.
TLC Disability Services Frapp and Capp will feature on Helping Hands from SATURDAY 3 FEBRUARY 2024 on 9GEM, Channel 9 and 9NOW.
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