Srinagar: A specially-abled girl from Jammu and Kashmir has set an example by running a cafe on her own.
‘Priyanka’s Cafe’ was set up by her family in Jammu’s Shastri Nagar after the lockdown. Despite being specially abled, she is running the cafe without any hassles.
Her family members say they had even noticed positive changes after she started running the cafe.
“Priyanka used to go to a school for special children but unfortunately it was closed during the Covid lockdown. As a result, she was forced to sit at home. The closure of school hurt her. We wanted to keep her engaged and therefore, we set up this cafe,” said Sakshi Thakur, Priyanka’s ‘bhabi’.
“We are glad that she is running it herself now and we are noticing positive changes. Yesterday, she crossed the road on her own for the first time when she noticed that a small kid (a customer) was unable to cross the road. This is a major achievement for us. She has also started recognizing kids that come to this cafe,” she added.
Sakshi said families that have special children should support them.
“We need to bring these children outside our homes so that they interact with society. The family members of such specially-abled children should have a positive frame of mind. Now, she understands that she has to run this cafe,” she said.
Valley-based food blogger Omar Rather of ‘Kashmirfoodgram’ fame said Priyanka was an ‘inspiration’ and had started attracting the attention of food bloggers.
“I was amazed to see the courage of Priyanka and how she runs a cafe despite being specially abled. She is a perfect inspiration and example. She is very friendly and develops a rapport with her customers, especially children. She may not be able to talk properly but can understand everything and she is lucky to have family support,” said Omar.
“Family support for specially-abled persons is a must. Her brother has a factory that produces soya milk and tofu. These products can also be found at her cafe beside the usual items like ice-creams, coffee, soups, etc. Because of her courage, Priyanka has started attracting food bloggers like Food Pandits and myself and we all should encourage specially-abled persons like her,” he added.