Every GiGi’s Playhouse offers signature therapeutic and education based programs throughout the week and on the weekends at designated times.  Volunteers are the heartbeat of every Playhouse.


Here at Hugs + Mugs volunteers play an important role in helping our adult participants aka our internets achieve their #bestofall.  Hug + Mugs is more than just a real live cafe with yummy coffee, gelato, cookies, shakes and great merchandise.  It is a skill building work environment for the Gratuadtes of GiGi U to practice what they have learned in a hands on fashion.

During the 18 week career training program, interns will continue developing the skills newly learned at GiGi U.  Each will manage different aspects of a real life retail environment- from managing money transactions, to customer service, to inventory control, to fulfilling online orders, safe food handling skills, employee training and more.  Support staff also provides assistance in job preparation skills via mock interviews.  Throughout this internship, interns receive individualized, hands-on training applicable to a variety of work experiences through community engagement which leads to achievement of goals through work or volunteer experiences. Various volunteer engagements are made available for future career opportunities for communities to support the overall broadening of Down syndrome awareness through engagement efforts.

At the conclusion of the internship, interns receive referrals to potential fields of employment, based on their strengths and interests-all with the goal of partnering with the family to help participants obtain community-based employment.  We continue to support participants by communicating with their employers to ensure the growth, development and success of their employees. We also maintain contact with employees in the form of coaching and continued support where needed.




How can you help? So glad you have  asked! We are looking of volunteers who are able to……

Work with interns and staff to complete activities tied to store sales including:

o   Customer service skills (taking and filling orders at the counter)

o   Sales skills (using the cash register machines, making change, and issuing receipts)

o   Food & beverage service skills (preparing and serving coffee, espresso and other specialty drinks)

o   Logistics and fulfillment skills (order packaging and shipping)

o   IT skills (downloading, filling, confirming and tracking online orders), and more.

·        Facilitate daily training activities of the interns, instilling high expectations and push them to give their ‘best of all’

·        Track intern activity completion for each intern each day

·        Assist with field trips and birthday parties as needed to support intern learning and a good experience for attendees

·        Help to capture activities of the day in order to make posts for social media

·        Recognize (verbally) interns for their work and give suggestions/ feedback on their performance as appropriate


Experience/ Qualifications:

·        Excellent communication skills, positivity and enthusiasm for GiGi’s Playhouse

·        Patience to support adults with DS as they learn all areas of store operations

·        Ability to work one on one with adults with DS

·        Ability to work independently with minimal direction


Potential volunteers will be required to attend a GiGi’s Playhouse Volunteer Orientation.  Once in the store, training will be provided for all volunteers. If you would like more information please send us an email at info@gigisplayhouse.org/hugsandmugs. We can’t wait to hear from you!

Hugs & Mugs


GiGi's Playhouse


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