Schooner Inc began in 1975 as a means to highlight the plight of the Long Island Sound and to help amplify the positive difference that the Clean Water Act was starting to make in US waters. Today, the company connects more than 8,000 people each year to the beauty and history of New Haven Harbor via public sails, summer camps, and educational programs.
For the last 23 years, the Quinnipiack—central Connecticut's only traditionally rigged tall ship—has hosted hands-on marine experiences for kids and adults. The New Haven mayor has officially decreed the schooner to be the city's flagship, as well as the ship Most Likely to Wear Couture Sails. The spacious boat was named to honor the Native Americans who inhabited the region and is helmed by an experienced and friendly crew.
During a job interview with a recent college graduate in 2010, business professional Scott Sokolowski decided to ask an easy question: “Why aren’t you wearing a suit today?” When the candidate replied honestly, saying simply, “I can’t afford one,” Sokolowski was inspired to help. He established Save-A-Suit, a nonprofit organization dedicated to one simple goal: helping young talent acquire appropriate, professional business attire for job interviews. Though these efforts are typically geared toward recent male and female college graduates who are often in their early 20s, Save-A-Suit also works with veterans of all ages to help them arrive at interviews dressed professionally.
See how Groupon helps you discover local causes and lend a helping hand at the Groupon Grassroots blog.
In 1929, Tom Pinchbeck’s great grandfather traveled to Guilford with his family and staked their new territory with a massive greenhouse. For the next 79 years, Pinchbeck’s Rose Farm nurtured 100,000 rose bushes until highly industrial competition began to cloud their traditional production methods.
Rather than closing the doors on his farm, Pinchbeck restructured the business with his friend Jim Lyman. Lyman had been seeking a meaningful job opportunity for his son and other individuals on the autism spectrum. Through Roses for Autism—and in coordination with Ability Beyond Disability—Lyman and Pinchbeck aim to facilitate independence in the business world for individuals with autism. Employees at the farm take part in each step of the process by selecting roses, cutting stems, arranging bouquets, checking inventories, processing orders, and packaging shipments to be enjoyed by hungry bees and brides across the country.
Working to empower individuals with disabilities to live life to the fullest, Futures, Inc. provides social-skills training, tutoring, independent-living training, and other support services to students and adults with disabilities. At the Futures School—Connecticut’s first community-based special-education school to be approved by the Department of Education—students aged 14–21 receive customized, one-on-one special education in their home communities. These education services include real-world work experience, transportation services, sessions with a full-time counselor, and typically lead to a high-school diploma from Futures School.