An innovative day care centre for people with learning difficulties has opened its doors in Rugby.
The aim of Works 4 Me is to provide a work-based environment where goods can be recycled and sold.
There are three full time members of staff, Lynne Minns, Kate Morris, Toni Morris, and volunteer director Amanda Brand.
The shop, in High Street, is set up as a social enterprise not-for-profit company, using the team’s personal savings.
Kate said: “It is a new venture and we are on the look out for clients to champion our new initiative.
“The clients will be encouraged to choose what to make and work on and to deal with customers and will get to work alongside artists to gain new skills.”
She said they will also gain experience both in life skills and the world of work.
Kate added: “All money made from sales in the shop goes in a group fund.
“Clients then decide as a group what to spend the money on – it may be days out, a game for the shop or something else.”
She said by selling their products, clients can interact with the public and receive instant feedback on their work.
Kate added: “Many find mixing with people they don’t know, working as part of a team, and working to a rigid timetable a bar to employment.
“We want to encourage a work ethic, giving clients a sense of achievement and pride in their work. Our main clientele will be students leaving special schools and colleges who require full time support.”
Saturday’s opening included taster sessions, tours, talks a stilt walker and artist in residence Charlotte Pettifer.
It was attended by Rugby Mayor Cllr Ramesh Srivastava.
Kate said: “We are applying for funding from several sources, and taking a big risk as the rates alone in that area of town are £13,000.
“We hope to be a positive presence in the town centre, a good link with the charity shops, showing what can be done with old furniture and supporting the Hub community cafe a few doors down.”
Kate invites any young adults who have attended a special school or college to pop in for a chat.
Visit the website http://www.works4me.name, or facebook page https://www.facebook.com/works4me.name or telephone Kate Morris on 07816 575 156.