radically inclusive coffee
'Radically inclusive' new coffee shop empowers staff with disabilities in Rice Village
Rice Village’s new coffee shop offers customers more than properly brewed lattes and smoothies. Bitty & Beau’s Coffee has the self-described “radically inclusive” mission of providing employment to people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).
Founded by Ben and Amy Wright in 2016 and named for their two children with Down syndrome, Bitty & Beau’s aims to change the way people think about those with disabilities. From its first location in Wilmington, N.C., the company now has 24 corporate-owned and franchised locations in 12 states and Washington, D.C.
“80 percent of people with disabilities don’t have jobs -- and we’re out to change that. Not just by providing employment opportunities for people with disabilities, but by showing our guests what’s possible,” co-founder Amy Wright said in a statement. “Bitty & Beau’s Coffee has created a path for people with disabilities to become valued, accepted and included in every community — we’ve said it from the start — it’s more than just a cup of coffee.”
At a grand opening ceremony on Saturday, January 15, dozens gathered to welcome the new shop. As the video below illustrates, Bitty & Beau’s employees are as excited about their new jobs as customers are about having a new coffee option.
In addition to cold and hot drinks, the shop serves pastries and sells merchandise with slogans such as “Not Broken” and “Radically Inclusive.” Every merchandise purchase comes with a handwritten thank you note.
“With the support of the community behind us, we are energized to bring Bitty & Beau’s Coffee to Houston, where we know that our store can positively impact the entire community,” Wright added.
Bitty & Beau’s is located at 2367 Rice Blvd. Hours are 8 am - 6 pm daily.