Destination Desserts Helps People with Disabilities Move On



Destination Desserts Helps People with Disabilities Move On

Abilities365 News | 2014-05-27 15:47:08
Finding gainful employment for people with disabilities has never been easy. But add a tanking economy to the mix and you've got yourself a serious challenge. Donna Gunning of the Center for Head Injury Services took those lemons and made delicious lemon-frosted cupcakes. Her food truck business, Destination Desserts, employs people recovering from head trauma. By breaking the recipes down into smaller, more manageable steps, her employees have the opportunity to exercise their memory skills and excel at their jobs.

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Food Truck Serves Up Jobs For Those With Special Needs

By Susan Weich, @

A food truck famous for its gooey butter bars and rocky road cupcakes has a higher purpose — it’s a training ground for people with head injuries and disorders such as autism.

When the economy tanked in 2008, finding jobs for people with disabilities became an even bigger challenge, said Donna Gunning of the Center for Head Injury Services, a St. Louis nonprofit.

“So we decided to take matters into our own hands and create jobs,” she said.

Gunning was looking for an alternative to a sheltered workshop, a business she could break down into steps like an assembly line, and she thought of making desserts. “Some people could pre-measure things, others might mix frosting or be good at the decorative part,” she said.

She initially floated the idea of a company that delivered freshly baked cookies to college campuses but nixed the idea because of the headache of finding dependable drivers. Gunning opted for a food truck instead, and Destination Desserts was born.

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