We’re John, Renee, and Caroline – the Ratcliffe family – and we call Charlotte our home. Renee is a native Charlottean who loves her fast-growing hometown more every year.
Since Caroline’s first birthday in 2003, cake decorating has been a fun, creative hobby for Renee. In 2013, our family discovered that cakes and cake pops were also a means to fundraising for our mission trips in Albania, the Dominican Republic, and Flat Rock, NC.
While Renee does much of the baking, John and Caroline are definitely involved in the kitchen, in project design, in deliveries, and in taste testing 🙂
We’re compelled to combine a teaching background in special education with our love for baking in a way that opens doors for our neighbors who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Although people with disabilities are often marginalized in society, and particularly the working world, they deserve a meaningful chance to contribute to a community with dignity.
In Charlotte, there is a significant gap in the employment rates between working-age people with and without disabilities, and our mission is to bridge this gap.
The word “capable” is significant to us, as we want to recognize and celebrate every way every person is capable. And so, “Cakeable,” in our name, is meant to sound similar to “capable.”
Presently we are talking with small business advisers, taking classes in nonprofit management, and exploring options for kitchen space. We are inspired by other businesses who have maximized the potential and opportunity of their trainees and employees who have intellectual and developmental disabilities. Most of all, we’re praying and asking God to lead the way. We would very much appreciate your prayers and connections with people who could serve as mentors and supporters of this dream.
We hope to continue to update this story under God’s direction!
John, Renee, and Caroline