Our First Social Enterprise

Grace & Flavor, a SLS Community social enterprise, provides skilled job training and employment for adults with autism, Down Syndrome and other learning differences. Tackling the over 85% unemployment rate for neurodiverse adults, we extend our impact with a job placement and support network for other businesses in the Northwest Arkansas corridor that are ready to hire our experienced employees.

Located in Downtown Springdale at 117 Emma Avenue, we are creating a gathering place, honoring and supporting the rich diversity in our community. Our signature sandwiches, salads, smoothies and coffee drinks fuel energizing conversations and provide a quiet, tasty respite from the demands of the day. Partnering with like-minded businesses, such as Rockin’ Baker Academy and their pastry/culinary state-approved training program for adults with autism, we expand workforce opportunities for a talented, yet often overlooked group of remarkable people.

SLS is launching a series of social enterprises that create an innovative network of skills training, employment and support for neurodiverse adults. Most paid services end after high school and, along with the high unemployment rate, the incredible contributions of talented men and women go untapped. We are changing that.

Grace & Flavor will:

Offer opportunities to develop skills in management, marketing, customer service, hospitality and interacting with the community.

Hire up to 20 neurodiverse adults in a welcoming environment of true diversity and inclusion.

Broaden skill development to expand employment opportunities beyond Grace & Flavor.

Meet Mark

Mark is a hard-working, talented young man with great potential… and he is autistic. When we first met Mark in July 2018, he was homeless, recently lost his job, felt disconnected and was living simply day-to-day. His friends from Little Rock contacted SLS Community and asked if we would meet with him. Mark wanted a job and hoped to contribute to something positive.

After the first meeting with the HR manager at Phigenics, a water management company, Mark was offered a job in shipping. He excelled, was reliable, detailed and became an important member of the team. He was so determined to be on time that he walked over an hour each way to work.  Mark mentioned getting a bike for his commute. The team got together and gave Mark a bike and all the accessories to celebrate his contribution to the company. Today, Mark has an apartment with a roommate, a new life and doesn’t miss a day of work. And, he is an inspiration to his teammates.

Want to spread the word?

Download our information sheets about Grace & Flavor to share with others you think would be interested in our program.

Incredible Things Can Happen With Your Support

The need for innovative, person-centered services and support continues to exceed the available resources, leaving a generation of people with emotional and intellectual disabilities and their families in a programmatic, financial and personal crisis.

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