“We just want this to be a safe place for these people to come in, feel of service and of value, learn some vocational skills,” his mom said.
Jacob McFarland loves making and bringing his parents coffee — earning him the household nickname “Barista Jake,” which spread to the rest of Norristown, Pennsylvania. And now the 21-year-old, who has autism, has his own cafe.
Making coffee for his dad is a passion. “It makes me feel very, very happy. It really does. I’m telling you the truth. It totally does,” Jacob told CBS News.
“He’s telling you the truth!” said his mom Angela. “Jacob is his father’s biggest fan, and my husband loves coffee. So, everything my husband loves, Jacob loves. I didn’t know though, that Jacob was immersing himself in all types of research about the proper beans to use, the different coffee blends, the best water, the water temperature, the technology of the whole thing. I didn’t know any of that.”
His parents own a record store in town, and they had to temporarily close it when the pandemic hit because it was not an essential business. Jacob, who was 19 at the time and had graduated high school, was still in continuing education courses, but those halted too.
“He craves routine and he didn’t have a routine anymore because of the pandemic,” Angela said. “So, we decided to do a curbside coffee cart outside of our store.”
Source: A man with autism opened a cafe with his family during the pandemic. Now, they’re helping young people with disabilities enter the workforce.