A volunteer experience at a homeless shelter sparked the idea for Breaktime. They heard many stories from clients about how hard it was to gain employment because of the stigma of homelessness.
"We hope to show other employers that this is a population that has a lot of talent and a lot of potential. They just need some support," said Shu.
Getting that first job opportunity can be life-changing according to Katherine James of Bridge Over Troubled Waters, an organization that helps homeless youth. She said developing some consistency on the job for a homeless youth can show future employers a person is reliable and has developed marketable skills.
Breaktime will be a streamlined operation, reselling baked goods to reduce fixed costs and licensing requirements. "Our biggest goal is to create a template model that can be used in other cities, other places," said Schoen.
The date for opening Breaktime is late October or early November and the students are still raising funds.
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