Housing for the Special Needs Community

Director Bonnie Schmidt was asked to speak at the David Posnack JCC in Davie FL. She discusses her new organization the IDDEAL Foundation and its focus on housing for the special needs community.

Hiring Employees with IDD

ScentsAbility Director Bonnie Schmidt talks about hiring employees with IDD during her NCA keynote speech. She discusses the value of organizations like Vocational Rehab and Best Buddies, and also reviews the tax breaks that companies can receive for hiring individuals with IDD.

Lexica

In Part One of her keynote speech, Director Bonnie Schmidt spoke about the trials of Jessica and Lexy and the life changing independence they’re searching for. She talks about their health issues, their bond, and how they became Lexica. She also invites them to make a small speech of their own.

Thank you to the National Candle Association for their amazing support of ScentsAbility candles. We are eternally grateful for having been given this opportunity to speak on such an important and pressing topic in today’s society.

National Candle Association Expo 2019

Team ScentsAbility had an amazing week at the Grand Beach Resort in Naples Florida. They met vendors and suppliers from all segments of the candle industry, from wicks and wax, to jars and fragrances. They were able to test out a new candle pouring machine, and they gave their first demo on candle making at an NCA expo!

Director Bonnie Schmidt was the keynote speaker, and spoke about job creation for the special needs community, as well as the struggles that ScentsAbility goes through every day. She also gave out awards to all of the companies and individuals in the candle industry that have helped ScentsAbility grow over the past three years.

Power of Art

Power of Art

Another amazing opportunity for our Team Members to be participating members of our community! On April 9th ScentsAbility Team Members were invited to meet the Ladd Brothers at the Coral Springs Museum of Art during the Artist Meet & Greet as part of the Power of Art events in Coral Springs and Parkland  https://coralspringsmuseum.org/events/powerofart/

Housing options

Housing options

Housing Options for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities are limited. The majority of this population live with family or in Group Homes.

As any young adult will probably tell you at one point or another, living with one’s parents is not always a great solution. Socialization is difficult as they may not have the opportunity to meet a lot of other people if he or she are constantly surrounded with the same family members. As parents age, it may become impossible for them to care for their child anymore, and the transition from a life-long residence could be more traumatic than if they had moved out when they were younger.

While there are some wonderful group homes with caring staff – this is not always the case. Group homes come in many varieties and can be paid for in many ways by state programs for people with disabilities.  Limited budgets result in less than ideal settings, programming and nutrition; and constantly changing staff is difficult for individuals with I/DD. 

Our goal at ScentsAbility is to develop an affordable, safe community for our Team Members who have expressed very clearly that they want to live as independently as they can WITH their peers. This is a difficult project and will take many years; but we are committed to succeeding… it’s what parents do for their kids – give them every opportunity to have a purposeful future!

Everyone has unique abilities.

Everyone has unique abilities.

Every ScentsAbility package includes a handwritten card from one of our Team Members. Writing in small spaces is very difficult for Jessica who has both visual and fine motor skills deficits. At ScentsAbility we modify the processes to give our Team Members the ability to reach their potential. A simple cut out template allows Jessica to write her name on the cards. One of our amazing moms, Sheri Scagliola (Katie’s mom) came up with this idea and now Jessica is writing her name independently!

AOL Holiday Heroes

Every holiday has its unsung hero, and AOL’s video series “Holiday Heroes” highlights those individuals who are making a difference in their communities.

A producer from AOL saw the story of ScentsAbility on South Florida’s Channel 10 News earlier this fall and ScentsAbilitiy was chosen as AOL’s Holiday Heroes. AOL sent a crew to the ScentsAbility candle shoppe to interview the team, and spend a day of candle making with the special young adults. It was a very special day for everyone. The morning was full of interviews and emotional individual stories. Then they went out for pizza with the crew for lunch. In the afternoon they returned to the candle shop and made candles, volcanoes and had lots of laughs. The AOL crew learned all about ScentsAbility’s mission to provide job training, employment and housing for young adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).


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Women’s Expo 2018 WEX

Women’s Expo 2018 WEX

WEX is the premier event for entrepreneurs, change-makers, go-getters, creatives, industry leaders, and any woman who has a dream and a mission to turn her ideas into reality. ScentsAbility was invited to attend and Director Bonnie Schmidt was nominated for the National WEX Award.

The team was up bright and early to setup for the event at Broward Convention Center. (Even the boys helped setup the booth! Then they went for breakfast while the women had fun!) It was non-stop speeches, networking, and selling. An incredible event that encourages women from all over the world to be the best they can be.

There wasn’t an open seat in the house when the award was announced and many were waiting in anticipation. To the surprise of team ScentsAbility, Bonnie was announced the winner of the 2018 WEX award! Bonnie, Lexy and Jessica made their way up to the stage and they were showered with photographers paparazzi style! Lexy was smiling from ear to ear.

Thank you to Alexa Carlin Founder and CEO of WEX for allowing Scentsability to be part of this very special event.

#womenempowerx #womenempowerexpo #wexftl #wex18 #friends #specialneeds

 

Candle Shoppe Talk Episode #5

It’s coming up on that time of the year and it’s time to work, work, work. The shoppe is busy with candle making, packing and shipping. Everyone has their hands full. Bonnie and Denise are keeping the team focused and they’re pumping out as many candles as possible. Jessica keeps the team motivated with her “I love you’s” all day long…