The Food for Good Thought
job placement agency and bakery in Columbus, Ohio, was founded by Dr. Audrey Todd as a way to provide an opportunity for her son to flourish as an adult.
Todd realized that her nonverbal son with autism would likely have limited future employment opportunities, and founded the agency to help meet a need in the community.
"We provide employment services, as well as transition services for individuals with autism," said Sarah Duplessis, program director at the agency.
Following Todd's son’s interests, cooking and baking became a skill that was able to be developed as time went on. Before her son developed an interest in cooking and baking, he was placed on a gluten-free diet due to his significant digestive problems; as a result, some of his problematic neurological behaviors diminished in intensity.
Dr. Todd created a company that provides both supported employment and gluten-free foods to individuals with autism as well as consumer with dietary sensitivities.
"We're not looking for any job for you, we're looking for the right fit," Duplessis added, of finding the right jobs for individuals with autism.
Autism Speaks launched a tool to address the challenges facing young adults and adults with autism in the job market. The mission of TheSpectrumCareers.com is to connect employers with qualified individuals with autism and other disabilities.
Leading businesses quickly post open job requirements and recruit qualified job seekers with autism and other disabilities.
Job seekers will upload video resumes to demonstrate their skills and interests to prospective employers.
Employment service providers and job coaches can provide autism-specific resources and support to both parties, if necessary