Amy and Ben Wright’s Coffee Shop employs 40 people with differing intellectual and developmental challenges, and it’s proved so popular they’re opening another branch.
The story of Bitty & Beau’s Coffee starts with inclusion
Amy married “Mr. Wright” 23 years ago. They’re the proud parents of four children – the two youngest, Bitty & Beau, having Down syndrome – which makes them feel like the luckiest people on the planet. As advocates for the value, inclusion and acceptance of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), the Wrights have dedicated their lives to making the world a better place for their children and others living with IDD.
Beau’s 12th birthday wish was to have his little sister’s name put up in lights
The original Beau’s Coffee opened January 2016 in a 500 square foot space in Wilmington, NC. The original shop was run by 19 employees with intellectual and developmental disabilities. With over 70% of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) unemployed nationwide, Beau’s Coffee created a path for people with IDD to become more valued, accepted and included in every community.
In July 2016, Beau’s Coffee was renamed Bitty & Beau’s Coffee (Beau’s 12th birthday wish was to have his little sister’s name put up in lights, too) and moved to a 5,000 sq/ft building that now serves as both a local coffee house and national headquarters. Bitty & Beau’s Coffee currently employs 40 people with IDD and has been featured on The Rachael Ray Show, Harry, Good Morning America, HLN, People Magazine and Southern Living Magazine.
Bitty and Beau’s Coffee Brews Up New Location
Coffee with a Cause Pours it Forward with Expansion into Charleston, South Carolina.
Bitty & Beau’s Coffee (North Carolina-based) will open a second store in South Carolina later this year. After holding a nationwide search, owner’s Amy and Ben Wright have chosen to bring their pioneering blend of southern hospitality to Charleston in fall 2017.
Brewing up more than just delicious drinks, Bitty & Beau’s Coffee is a human rights movement disguised as a coffee shop. By hiring an entire staff of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD), Bitty & Beau’s Coffee provides a one-of-a-kind experience that will forever change the way communities view those with IDD.
“We created Bitty & Beau’s Coffee to show the world that people with IDD should be valued, accepted and included members of society, especially in the workplace,” said Amy Wright. “It’s a place where diversity is not just appreciated, it’s celebrated.”
She added, “Charleston offers the same southern hospitality we’re accustomed to and was recently voted the ‘Best City in the South’ by Southern Living Magazine, so it’s the perfect place to open our second location."
With around 80% of people with IDD unemployed nationwide, Bitty & Beau’s Coffee creates a path for people with IDD to become more valued, accepted and included in every community.
Pouring it forward — DONATE NOW — every dollar counts
Every dollar donated helps us** create more jobs for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.<br /> <br /> **ABLE to Work USA is the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organisation that helps support BITTY & BEAU'S COFFEE.