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Dani Dairy Delights - Business Venture with a Social Twist

Selected!

Dani Dairy Delights is a catering business venture with social relevance. It is a recent and essential component of D.A.N.I.’s (developing and nurturing independence of our young adults withspecial needs) day program. Menus are emailed to offices, schools, synagogues and individuals and requests are returned by the deadline. Under the guidance of a professional chef and staff, our young adults with challenges prepare and organize lunches. Orders are delivered and payment is collected by the young adults themselves. The money raised is placed in their own business account and the young adults, as partners, pay themselves a nominal salary from the profits. It is an incredibly encouraging and confidence building proposal that benefits the adults and the Jewish community. They practise kitchen, daily living and social skills that promote transition to independence in addition to financial values and planning.
It is a simple operation in our currently rented home that has been financially successful. However, due to increasing demands, we are moving to a much needed larger location. The funds offered by JVPF would help finance our professional kitchen and make it accessible to all of the participants. The strategic business expertise would help grow the business to the next level. The accumulated profit would then be used to help finance the D.A.N.I. program.

Need: 

Young adults with challenges have few options when graduating from high school. D.A.N.I. is a parent driven group that offers young adults a unique opportunity for personal growth while establishing strong connections to the community and building a Jewish identity. Dani Dairy Delights is a business venture with social relevance that prepares our young adults for the next stage of life.
One of D.A.N.I.’s goals is an emotional transition from a state of learned helplessness to supported independence, from the child who remains silent and told by others what to do to the adult who has can advocate for himself and create his own life. The rewards for our young adults are abundant. However, in addition to our adults with various abilities, we are also attracting those marginalized and require a more supported environment; the adult with moderate to severe learning difficulties who has not found his or her niche. These individuals are highly trainable; with minimal job coaching they would be able to learn required skills. In a sheltered environment at Dani Dairy Delights, they would be able to fulfill their potential.
The community members also gain by meeting and strengthening relationships with D.A.N.I. participants. In turn, that development will have a ripple effect extending to social programs, synagogues, neighbourhoods and many more possibilities. A safe sense of warmth will then envelope our young adults in the community.
D.A.N.I., a registered charity, has been highly successful in its 5 years of existence. It has shown and sustained tremendous expansion and currently supports over 70 families. There is a growing desparate and essential need for our young adults to spend meaningful days as valued and contributing members of society.

Goals, Objectives & Measurement: 

D.A.N.I. has created programs that benefit everyone; our young adults with challenges, the volunteers and members of the Jewish community.
Objectives & Measurements
1. ENHANCE the quality of the lives of our young adults -
a. Train D.A.N.I. clients in aspects of business
b. Vocational training and activities of daily living
c. Create more connections to the community
Measurability
a. Record positive learning and social experiences of the client
b. Record work experiences
c. Discuss and record effects upon lives
d. Document increased involvement of clients at work as well as improved connections and activities

2.REDUCE isolation of members of the community
a. Provide social situations
b. Encourage participation
c. Provide work option
Measurability
a. Document increase in relationships
b. Document interest in participation
c. Document involvement of community

3. EXPAND community connections
a. Provide meals
b. Meet members of the community
c. Connect with other agencies/ organizations
Measurability
a. Record increase in numbers of customers
b. Record increase in community volunteers
c. Record growth in relationships
d. Record increase in inter-agency activity

4. ENHANCE self worth, self image and self esteem
a. Involve clients in aspects of business (food and financial)
b. Involve young adults in planning and implementing
c. Offer a salary to the young adults, who are partners in the business
Measurability
a. Monitor participation, interest
b. Observe behavior
c. Discussion with families and community

5. STRENGTHEN skills; kitchen, social, numeracy, literacy
a. Use a job coach to teach and modify skills
b. Implement techniques to enable each client to reach their potential
c. Involve the young adults in all aspects; cooking, banking planning, organizing
Measurability
a. Record improvement of skills in individual plans
b. Review individual plans
c. Review goals and increase expectations

6. EXPAND partnerships -
a. Actively recruit appropriate organizations
b. Provide opportunities for involvement
c. Use the business model as a pilot project and share with interested organizations

Measurability
a. Record participation of other organizations
b. Record increase in number of organizations and individuals
c. Record number of ‘pilot project sharing’

7 FINANCIAL success
a.Volume of business grows
b. Community involvement increases
c. Net profit grows
d. profit re-invested in the DANI day program

Measurability
a. Increase in income
b. Increase in demand
c. Increase payment for young adults for their services
d. Increase financial support to DANI day program

Opportunity for Involvement: 

. OPPORTUNITY FOR INVOLVEMENT

We would welcome and appreciate assistance offered by the professionals at JVPF.
Our needs would include
a. Marketing
b. Business Plans/ Strategic Planning
c. Possible advocacy in the government
d. PR & media networking
e. Social Media Expertise

Time Frame: 

In the next 6 months or so, D.A.N.I. must move to a larger location as we have outgrown D.A.N.I.’S Place. The next 2 ½-3 years will witness exponential growth. The numbers of our adults with challenges (in the complete program as well as those just wishing to be part of the catering business) will more than double in 2012-13.

The assistance of the professionals will direct and focus our present operation and help incorporate and secure our expectations for 2013.

Sponsor/Staff: 

• Supported by a number of organizations
• Partnerships with many organizations;
*** Other organizations in the community who cater to young adults with special
needs will also partake in the catering venture when possible. D.A.N.I. offers
them the unique opportunity and welcomes them.
*** D.A.N.I. received a grant to develop programs with a seniors group in the
area. They would also be invited to teach recipes and help in the venture.
* A strong working board
• Ability to connect to resources when needed
* Working Board of Directors
• Please see ‘expertise’ below

Organizational Structure and Expertise: 

D.A.N.I. employs
1. 1 professional chef
2. 3 full time staff members
3. Director of Development (part-time)
4. Grant Writer (part-time)
5. Courier service (food delivery)
6. 10 casual staff workers
7. Graphic designer (brochures, media pieces)
8. Maintenance (part-time)

Volunteers include
1. Director with accounting background
2. Director to coordinate catering orders
3. Accountant/ treasurer
4. Legal consultant
5. Medical consultant
6. Business consultant
7. Occupational/ Physio/ Speech Therapists
8. Social worker
9. Caterer as a consultant
10. Other members of the community who assist with specific issues
11. Sources for whole sale cost of food

Criteria that Enhance Competitiveness: 

D.A.N.I. values our young adults as contributing members of our community. The catering venture incorporates practical, realistic, concrete opportunities for learning, maturing and growing towards an independent good life. The business, and all it encompasses, will be a golden opportunity for those marginalized with few alternatives. It is a unique ‘Pilot Project’ that has already sparked interest from others and can be replicated where desired.
Dani Dairy Delights began as a modest and understated business. In its short 4 month lifespan, the catering business actually made a profit and paid the young adults. It has exploded with great interest and numerous orders and therefore, we are seeking guidance and expertise to build our catering venture to its true potential.
We have accomplished much in just a few years; 5 day/ week program, Sunday recreational program, after school integrated basketball,after school integrated music program, winter, summer and spring camps, holiday celebrations, an annual Gala & Community Celebration, information evenings for parents, an annual 1 day conference, a resource library and small fundraising initiatives.
Your financial and professional assistance would certainly promote Dani Dairy Delights and place our young adults in their rightful place in the community
As a relatively new organization , we still struggle in the corporate and business worlds. Our standing will be fortified by your investment and faith in our extraordinary concept. In addition, the bestowing of this particular grant will be a featured segment of our future fundraising and grant writing endeavours..