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Thursday, May 25, 2017 12:06 am

TASTE OF INCLUSION

A new cafe in Springfield’s west side aims to develop life skills for children with developmental disabilities.
On May 23, the Hope Learning Academy (HLA), community leaders and volunteers cut the ribbon on the Hope Inclusion Café and Play, located at 3252 Ginger Creek Drive.

The HLA is a special education program that strives to educate students regardless of socioeconomic background, learning style or disability. This café employs vocational students from Hope with developmental disabilities while offering a friendly atmosphere for the community to enjoy.

The café additionally includes a sensory play room designed for kids with or without disabilities. Parents are provided an adequate vantage point where can see the kids while enjoying homemade food and beverages prepared by the café staff. 

“We believe the Springfield community will embrace this model and support full inclusion for all people, regardless of ability or difference,” HLA CEO Clint Paul said. “This café provides an opportunity for children and adults of all ages to intermingle with one another and focus on our similarities.”

The café will be open Monday-Friday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information, visit www.thehopeinstitute.us.

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