The SOF Team
Small businesses and national brands alike are striving towards inclusivity
Updated: Jun 4, 2022
How one major brand and a local flower shop are making a difference for those with difficulties
Image source: Syda Productions
Everyone deserves to feel represented. Whether that is at the grocery store, or at a small flower shop, there is no greater feeling than inclusion. Sponsors of the Future has found two inspiring stories that show how important this extra effort from employers is for those who are medically or developmentally disabled.
Bounty - Prints with a Purpose
When thinking of inclusivity, paper towels may not be the first thing that comes to mind. However, they are something nearly everyone uses on a daily basis, and seeing yourself represented with the brand is a great feeling for someone with a difficulty.
In April of 2022, Bounty announced a collaboration with Visionaries + Voices, a non-profit in Cincinnati which provides exhibition opportunities, studio space, supplies, and support to over 125 artists with difficulties. With this collaboration, Bounty has teamed up with eight artists from the Visionaries + Voices program put their designs on paper towel rolls.
Image source: Bounty
The artists selected all have various styles of art that they find passion in. Ruth Burton, for example, loves incorporating nature into her art. Her Bounty design displays small houses surrounded by plants. Leah Davis, on the other hand, likes to be playful with her designs and uses bright colors. Leah knows that in order to make good art, you have to love what you are making,
A nonprofit flower shop with a great message
When Elanie Scott and Colleen Brennan were gifted Kati Mac Floral Designs in West Chester, they immediately had a vision for what they wanted the shop to become. After the birth of Elaine's daughter Emily, who has Down Syndrome, Elanie created the Chester County Down Syndrome Interest Group (CCDSIG).
This was a group that allowed families who have children with difficulties to come together and help one another through challenges. There, she met Colleen, and they were inspired to create a working environment where those with disabilities felt like a priority. That is where Kati Mac Floral Designs began.
Image source: The Philadelphia Inquirer
Through research, Scott had found that “18% of adults with an intellectual or developmental disability in Pennsylvania work alongside people without disabilities and earn market-driven wages,” and she wanted to make an effort to change this.
Today, over 50% of the Kati Mac Floral Designs staff has special needs, including Emily. She loves spending her time interacting with customers, playing her favorite music in the store, and smelling all the beautiful flowers.
At Sponsors of the Future, we love hearing about everyday brands and people putting a major effort into their organization to make it more inclusive. These small efforts make a huge difference for those who may not feel represented in their daily lives, and more organizations should be making an effort to make this normalized.