New shop in central Massachusetts run by neurodivergent students learning on the job

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Shrewsbury store run by neurodivergent students learning on the job

Shrewsbury store run by neurodivergent students learning on the job


SHREWSBURY – There’s a store in central Massachusetts that’s changing lives.

Maple and Main is a retail shop that opened up in Shrewsbury last November. It’s run by students who are neurodivergent.

They’re part of the RISE program (Reaching Independence through Supported Employment) at Shrewsbury Public Schools, which assists young adults with disabilities between the ages of 18 and 22.

“We had the good fortune of having support from the Department of Education as well as our school committee, superintendent and our families,” Meg Belsito, the Assistant Superintendent for Student Services, told WBZ-TV.

The students give tours of the shop and they’ve even made some of the items for sale. Matt Frost designed a glass.

“It’s a pixie glass and the thing that I put on was something that said ‘Rise and Shine,'” he told WBZ.

They make sure the shelves stay full and they all work together.

“RISE is very important to our students. This is the time in their life when they are learning to become a part of their community, learn about the community at large, pre-employment and employment,” Belsito said.

“It started to become a responsibility and I’m fine with responsibility. I like to be responsible and fun when I’m doing my job,” said RISE student Carl Amazan.

For more information, visit the RISE website or the Maple and Main website.

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