A pizzeria managed by people with autism received a big boost from a generous donor.
How much is a pizza worth? It depends on who makes it, and also who orders it.
In northern Italy, the first Italian pizzeria run by people with autism – PizzAut – is just getting off the ground. The project is very important for young people with autism and their families.
Italian newspaper La Repubblica reports that the plan has been slowed by the pandemic (their restaurant installations aren’t ready yet). They do already have a food truck up and running.
Most importantly, they have won the hearts and support of their first fans! On December 12, a client bought two “GourmAut” pizzas and paid $10,000!
The generous customer is an executive of a U.S. company, Eaton, which has an Italian office in Pessano, not far from where the first PizzAut pizzeria will be built. His first name is Mauro, as we learned from Nico Acampora, the president and founder of PizzAut, who thanked him publicly with a post on Facebook.
Let’s make possible what really matters
This gesture wasn’t just giving money for charity. It was a way of showing that the donor believes in people and their ability to do good.
I was struck to read, on the company’s homepage on their website, this very motto: “We make possible what really matters.” This gesture definitely seems consistent with that statement.
It’s liberating, I think, for those who spend every day dealing with numbers and productivity, competitiveness and the vicissitudes of the market, to be able to shift their focus. There is joy in helping others and in directing small investments to what deserves to be done. Creative and courageous efforts, like that of PizzAut, can restore dignity and well-being to those with a disadvantage.
The Corriere della Sera reports:
The American company has decided to support the PizzAut project, a project of restaurant work and labor inclusion for autistic young people, founded by Nico Acampora, the father of an autistic child, who has created a food truck run by special young people while waiting to open the first restaurant run entirely by autistic people which has been blocked by the pandemic.
Goodness is contagious
It’s encouraging to read about people who, instead of retreating into safety, are helping others get off the ground. Even the sensitive, reactive world of social media approved! As one person commented (quoted by La Repubblica), “Good things do happen, and how! We must do good in order to attract more good, and you are doing it.”
The reasons for the PizzAut project
The project’s website presents its plan as follows:
The project aims to start a laboratory of social inclusion through the creation of a restaurant managed by young people with autism flanked by professionals in catering and rehabilitation. The young people will be initiated through a first phase of training that will study, together with psychologists and educators, the most appropriate task for each person included in the staff of PizzAut and especially how to make them feel self-sufficient and in balance with the world they are going through at that moment. All too often, people with autism are excluded from the world of work and from social relations. As parents of children with autism, we experience this every day with our children.
The initiative is a brilliant way of meeting others in their need, and creating a truly welcoming culture of life. But a project like this takes time, patience, creativity, ideas, and yes, money! May more people follow the example of this generous donor, and help get this initiative -– and many more of the same kind –- off the ground.