How can men cultivate good habits within the disabled community? A nationally-known company expands to make that difference.
Numbers can speak volumes. They can bring people together or tear them apart, as we’ve repeatedly been reminded. As a result, everyone seems to have a place and a role in the building or tearing down of society, Everyone seems to know what role they play in that venture–or at least has a direction in which they’re headed.
The majority of people usually find that kind of purpose through providing for their families and holding down a job–but it simultaneously leaves a daunting question hanging over humanity: Where does that leave the 1.2 million disabled individuals who are unemployed?
A 2014 study done at The Institute for Corporate Productivity found that number accounts for 85 percent of the general population in the US. Luckily, one nationally-known company is changing that–one employee at a time.
Smile Farms, a sister company of 1-800 Flowers, hires those within the disabled community who are of working age. Located in Garden City, New York, the organization teaches employees the agricultural techniques of getting fresh, organic food from farm to table. They also cultivate a strong business sense in the actual farming and selling of products, all while giving each worker a sense of meaning and purpose.
In the video above, Jim McCann, CEO of 1-800 Flowers and co-founder of Smile Farms, talks about the heart and soul of the company’s mission.
“Everyone is better when they have a job. When they have a job that’s meaningful [and] fulfilling, it just seems to be the nexus of good health–not only for them, but for their community.”
Upworthy.com recently ran an article featuring Smile Farms and its impact on society. If one company has the capacity to create this kind of thriving environment for its employees as well as its customers, imagine the good we all could cultivate if we did the same. Not only that, but what kind of message would we be sending as leaders and businesspeople if we continue to turn down disabled workers who come knocking on our doors–not necessarily for the money, but for the opportunity?