It can be hard to find the right job, but special needs can make it more challenging. Often times, those with special needs may not be given a chance to work a regular job & have the experiences that come with that job.
Pawsabilities bridges the gap between those with special needs & living a normal life. Programs allow their workers to be proud of their work…build friendships…& feel empowered & independent. So, come visit their shop to see what it’s all about!
We chatted with Debbie Horn, Director of Pawsabilities, to learn more about their Kansas City organization & how they help pet lovers.
What is Pawsabilities?
Pawsabilities is a day program at a local retail store, providing jobs for people with a wide range of special needs. Workers operate a local pet treat bakery & pet boutique business to provide jobs & fund part of the program. You can shop tons of pet products at the storefront off Santa-Fe in Olathe, KS or shop online!
Find locally made dog treats like peanut butter treats, pet toys, clothing, hand-made dog scarves & other fun things for your pets.
“Everyone that comes here has parents who have said ‘we want something different’.”
Their main focus is providing a safe & beneficial environment, so those with special needs can thrive.
Pawsabilities found those with special needs have a common thread with most people; A love of dogs. So, they decided to bring the two together to provide great opportunities with a great dog treat business.
Their ultimate goal is to facilitate a campus in Kansas City, where people with different special needs can live independently, with light assistance when needed.
“These kids want a life like their peers have – the chance to have what they want.” Pawsabilities gives them a chance at that.
1 Year, 55 People with Special Needs Working with Pawsabilities.
Rather than giving people any job, Pawsabilities works with individuals to find the exact fit for them. Their strengths & unique skills are honed-in, so they can be successful in a work environment. Once in the program, Pawsabilities provides cross training over a variety of retail store skills like; customer service, baking, & running a register.
So, bring your dog in to visit the Pawsabilities store! Workers enrolled in the program love to meet the pets who enjoy their treats. (& just playing with dogs in general)
Their day program aims to develop employable skills, healthy living & current events that can transfer to other jobs outside of the Pawsabilities program. The programs run Monday to Friday 8:30 to 3:30. The main goal is to help participants grow & learn around other people.
There are also evening programs available that serve individuals 10-21 years old, including children who are enrolled in school during the day. These programs focus on fun concepts like drama, older individuals who wish to attend are also welcome. Learn more about programs online!
How to Support Pawsabilities?
Come visit their pet boutique!
Shop grain-free dog treats like Peanut butter cookies, dog scarves, t-shirts, dog ‘paw’ balms, toys & other fun pet products. Experience the mission of Pawsabilities & bring your pups in for a visit…or you can purchase their products online. Check out what you can purchase at Pawsabilities:
Live from IC PawsAbilities where we’re working to bring you a story on their incredible work here in Kansas City! Take a look at your sneak peek:
Posted by iPetsKC.com on Friday, April 12, 2019
You can also volunteer with Pawsabilities!
The organziation also has an event coming up;
To honor the life of one of their members who was lost to suicide, Pawsabilities hosts an annual Puppy Parade to celebrate her life. The 2019 Puppy Parade will take place on September 21st, 2019 in the Pawsabilities parking lot. (Olathe, KS)
There will be dog costume contests, dog trick contests, carnival games, food, face painting, music & family-friendly fun.
Pawsabilities also hosts a Gala in February of each year, including a fashion show with members of the program. Their gala includes some individual tickets but is mostly tables from corporate sponsors and groups.
The Pawsabilities program provides a way for those who may not otherwise have a job to thrive in a retail & baking environment.
We are proud to partner with Pawsabilities & hope you will visit their location to check it out.
Come shop with your pets & support a great cause. There are adorable & delicious products for your pets to enjoy like Royal dog scarves. 😊