According to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report, 10.7% of people with a disability who are actively looking for work were unemployed in 2015. Collette Divitto was in a similar situation a few years back. Born with Down syndrome, she had trouble finding a job in Boston after she decided that she wanted to pursue a career in baking.
Every place where she interviewed turned her down despite her enthusiasm and interview strategy of bringing in cookies to share.
Many people would be discouraged after being turned down so many times, but Divitto persevered and decided to form her own baking business. As Upworthy reports, she started her own cookie company called Collettey's with the help of her mother and sister.
Not too soon after she began, Collettey’s received its first cookie order from a Boston grocery store. After a CBS News story covered her late last year, her story spread across the country and she has now received over 10,000 orders to be filled.
"I never raised her looking at her as if she had limitations," says Divitto's mother, Rosemary Alfredo. "I just said, 'We all have them. We all have things we're good at, and we all have things we're not good at.' You can call them disabilities. We all have strengths and we all have weaknesses. We don't focus on that."
Divitto hopes that now that her business is growing, she’ll be able to hire more people with disabilities, and she also hopes that her accomplishments inspire others to pursue their dreams any way they can, even if it means taking a nontraditional route.