Furniture handcrafted by local non-profit to enhance quality of life

West Virginia

One non-profit in Jackson County hires individuals with developmental disabilities. | Photo Courtesy: Haley Kosik/WOWK Staff

RAVENSWOOD, W.Va. (WOWK) – April is Autism Awareness/Acceptance month and inclusivity is the foundation one Jackson County non-profit is built on.

At JCDC Woodworks in Ravenswood, every piece of furniture made by hand is unique, just like the people responsible for making them.

They handcraft coffee tables, different types of outdoor furniture, cutting boards and much more.

Their mission for the past 40 years has been providing life skills and employment opportunities to individuals with developmental disabilities.

JCDC Woodworks Development and Communications Specialist, Sara Rose said, “Inclusion is really important to everyone’s emotional development, so you learn from what you experience.”

This non-profit employs 30 to 40 woodworkers. Not all have a disability. Those who do are on the Autism spectrum or are recovering from a traumatic brain injury.

“I tell them all the time, you can’t determine a person’s worth by a dollar amount, but we can appreciate what you do and we can be flexible and try to work with whatever the circumstances are because families need people to come and help them,” said Rose.

These job opportunities give individuals creative freedom with their products and help enhance their quality of life.

JCDC Employee, James Moales said, “I’m also the kind of person that likes to learn new things, so if I learn something new, then that’s worth the effort.”

On April 17, JCDC Woodworks will preview their summer furnishing collection, such as porch swings, gliders and benches. The money made will help fund the non-profit and wages for its employees.

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