THE COFFEE SHOP
The kitchen at Steps with Theera is adapted with visual supports, colour coded systems and information points, alongside staff who are trained to work in this environment. Each aspect has been designed by our architect and design team to be autistic friendly and accessible as we want the coffee shop to be a safe, community driven space that is inclusive of everyone.
– greeting customers – making drinks – preparing meals – taking orders – clearing tables – baking –
The kitchen area has a screen so customers can look in and see our students working. Be friendly and give them a big smile and a wave, encouragement goes a long way with our students. Please don’t observe for too long though, it can be a distraction or create anxiety for some of our students.
The whole of our coffee shop is a learning environment and positive reinforcement is really important which is why we have a ‘wall of positivity’ for customers and staff to leave praise for our students. At the end of each day, we take the students to the wall to reflect upon the positive outcomes for the day, so that each young person can end the day feeling good about themselves and ready for the next day. We ask for kind words to be used only.
We use the hashtag #iamable to promote positivity around special needs and to focus on the good. So often young people with special needs hear only what they are not able to do – we are here to change that.
Please note, the service charge on your bill goes directly to fund placements in our programme for local students from disadvantaged backgrounds. If you leave a tip, that goes straight to the students and staff working that day.