Skip to content

VIDEO: Employment for individuals with diverse abilities supported by Esquimalt business

The small business sells used books to support individuals with diverse abilities

A small business and day program out of Esquimalt is supporting people with diverse abilities by selling used books and other goods.

The purpose of ShopAbilities is to create employment opportunities for individuals with developmental and other disabilities.

Not only do individuals with diverse abilities run the business, but they gain work experience, build life skills, and develop economic independence.

ShopAbilities runs by accepting books and other items as donations, then sorting, scanning and pricing them to be put on their website for sale. ShopAbilities is just one part of the agency Abilities Community Services.

From Monday to Friday, the diverse abilities team participates in the day program, including bowling, mini-golf and working on the ShopAbilities store. They do free book deliveries and drop off flyers.

“There is a lot of work that needs to be done for people with diverse abilities to have economic independence and inclusion in the economy and the job market,” says ShopAbilities manager Andre Gordon, who is personally affected through having several family members with diverse abilities.

Occasionally they have been seen at the Victoria Public Market at the Hudson to sell their goods in person. For online purchases, the ShopAbilities crew arranges a delivery date and time, then heads into the community to make deliveries. This creates an opportunity for the team to interact with customers and give back to the community. All the revenue for ShopAbilities goes back into the organization to create jobs.

From May 28 to June 3, it’s AccessAbility Week.

ALSO READ: ‘Missed opportunities’: Saanich park renovation excludes people with disabilities: advocate

Do you have a story tip? Email:

Follow us on Twitter and Instagram, and like us on Facebook.