As a public school special education teacher, Taylor Ellerbrock witnessed the stark reality of life after high school for students with special needs. While other students look forward to the pursuit of college and careers, Taylor’s students had limited opportunities to find meaningful employment in their lives after high school.
The “unemployment crisis” that impacts individuals with disabilities (up to 80% of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities are unemployed nationwide) had come true for Taylor’s students, and it was a reality she was determined to change.
In 2016, Taylor sat down with Rick and Carolyn Jones who had experienced this reality first-hand with their two daughters. Through these conversations an idea developed to do something about this crisis in Bryan/College Station, Texas. After many more conversations where the dream took shape, they decided to take a leap of faith and create The BEE Community. In October 2017, The BEE Community was founded with a single purpose: to create a community for everyone to experience the dignity that comes from employment.
By the grace of God, The BEE Community opened its doors in the fall of 2018 offering an innovative work community that provides a sense of belonging and respect for adults of all ability levels. The BEE Community collaborates with local experts to create quality goods to sell locally and in the future online. We believe that every individual is made in the image of God and therefore has dignity, worth, and the divine design to work and contribute. If you would like to read more about our core beliefs, click here for our Statement of Faith.