Coffee shop with employees of different abilities opens in Sioux Falls

Positively KELOLAND

There’s a brand new business brewing in Sioux Falls that is all about inclusion. KELOLAND News told you about Yakity Yak Coffee Shack back in February. Plans to open in mid-March went down the drain thanks to the pandemic. After many of months of uncertainty, it’s celebrating its first few days of business. There are a few reasons why Yakkity Yak stands out.

A latte can be just another cup of coffee, unless you use many different ingredients to make it truly amazing.

“Little bit of chocolate, little bit of caramel,” Robert, a barista, said. “It’s super refreshing when you’re waking up in the morning.”

On Tuesday, customer Jean Hoff found more than a quick pick-me-up at Yakkity Yak Coffee Shack.

“It’s super delicious. I really love how the person who made my drink learned for the first time how to make a hot drink,” Hoff said.

Yakkity Yak’s main draw is its employees are people of different intellectual and physical abilities.

“It’s a way that shows the community we’re included,” Christian, a barista, said.

The coffee shop, located inside the All American Gymnastics Academy near 85th Street and Cliff Avenue, is celebrating its grand opening, finally, after a long few months of uncertainty due to the pandemic.

Manager Meredith Molseed says it’s worth the wait to see the employees happily run the coffee shop.

“It seems like in our society there’s so much focus on they can’t do it or they need help to do it. Every barista here gets to do everything on the job,” Molseed said.

Robert says this business gives visibility to a community that may often be overlooked.

“Take it from me, I was bullied in high school and middle school. You can still do amazing things,” Robert said. “People of different abilities really have a huge workforce and you can see that throughout other companies, too.”

Yakkity Yak could’ve been just another coffee shop. Look around, and you’ll see why it stands out; it’s the employees who make this place amazing.

“It just makes me happy to earn a living and say I can do this, you know?” Christian said.

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