Uniting for Inclusion: Waves Coffee, Joe's Table, and Individuals with Disabilities in the Workplace

Tuesday, August 15, 2023

Waves Coffee House, Joe's Table, and the Kurdish Canadian Society (KCS) are joining forces to create inclusive communities that empower individuals from diverse backgrounds and abilities, with a particular focus on individuals with autism. Together, they aim to provide meaningful employment opportunities, matching each person's unique skills with tasks that lead to personal and professional growth.

Central to this partnership is the shared belief that a coffee house should serve as the heart of a community, fostering connections among all its members. By collaborating, these organizations aim to offer a transformative opportunity for individuals seeking to enhance their communication and social skills, ultimately empowering them in the workplace.

"[The program] helped me to be better at communicating with people properly and be better at socializing with others," says Noah, a program graduate who lives with autism. "I'm not outspoken; I usually keep to myself." Noah's journey reflects the power of this initiative in nurturing self-confidence and fostering a sense of belonging.

Looking towards the future, Noah remains optimistic and determined to continue his growth journey. "I hope to further improve myself, gain more knowledge, learn new things, gain diverse experiences, and hopefully even help others as a result," he shares.

By aligning Waves Coffee, Joe's Table and the KCS, this collaborative effort aspires to create an unparalleled platform for individuals seeking to develop essential skills and secure meaningful employment. The program aims to train and empower 30 individuals within one year, primarily focusing on fostering job opportunities at Waves Coffee Houses. August 3 marks the inaugural graduation of the first cohort, symbolizing a significant milestone in this remarkable journey toward inclusivity.

Recent statistics from the 2017 Canadian Survey on Disability reveal stark disparities in employment rates, with persons with disabilities experiencing significantly lower employment rates compared to their non-disabled counterparts—59% versus 80%. Addressing this pressing issue, the Government of Canada has committed $272.6 million over five years in Budget 2022 to support the implementation of an Employment Strategy for Canadians with Disabilities through the Opportunities Fund.

”With the right skills and training, individuals can confidently pursue careers at Waves Coffee House, carrying with them the tools to secure meaningful employment and succeed in their chosen paths,” says Kayvan Rahmati, President of Waves Coffee House. “What you see with people in the program is someone who is given an opportunity they might not have had, and they grab onto it,” adds Dr. Peter Chung, founder of Joe’s Table Cafe, “when they finish, they work hard, and they don’t quit, they want to work.”

Organizations like Waves Coffee and Joe's Table are instrumental in championing inclusivity and empowering individuals with autism, embodying their shared vision of building a more equitable and diverse society.

About Waves Coffee:

Waves Coffee is a community-oriented coffee house that highly values inclusivity and fosters meaningful connections. With a steadfast commitment to providing meaningful employment opportunities, Waves Coffee actively empowers individuals to thrive in the workplace.

About Joe's Table:

Joe's Table is wholly dedicated to creating an inclusive work environment and providing individuals with autism invaluable employment opportunities. For more information about Joe’s Table, please visit:

About the Kurdish Canadian Society:

KCS is a dedicated organization that extends its support to individuals with disabilities, Canadians, refugees, and new immigrants, offering food support, skill enhancement, employment assistance, and coaching. Moreover, they provide funded training opportunities to empower individuals to improve their education, positively impacting their quality of life and that of their families.