A national honor received by a Wilmington resident Sunday night will enable her and her family to continue their mission of helping to employ and promoting the value of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
Amy Wright, co-founder of Bitty & Beau’s Coffee, owned by the nonprofit organization the Wright family also founded, ABLE to WORK USA, was named the 2017 CNN Hero of the Year in a ceremony Sunday night.
"People with disabilities have been in the shadows for too long, but no more," Wright said as she accepted the award, announced by TV personalities Kelly Ripa and Anderson Cooper.
Bitty & Beau's Coffee, named after Wright's two youngest children, Bitty and Beau, who have Down syndrome, is located at 4949 New Centre Drive in Wilmington. A new location
has been in the works on Church Street in Charleston, South Carolina.
Wright said Sunday night, "I am bringing this home to the 40 employees that work at Bitty & Beau's Coffee because they are my heroes, and most of all to my two youngest children, Bitty and Beau, who are my inspiration. I want you to know because I know you're watching at home tonight, Bitty and Beau, that I would not change you for the world but I will change the world for you."
Wright also thanked her husband, Ben Wright, and eldest children, Emma Grace and Lillie.
She has said previously
that the money that comes with the CNN Hero awards, $10,000 for each of the Top 10 CNN Heroes finalists and $100,000 for the CNN Hero of the Year, will help ABLE to WORK USA and Bitty & Beau's Coffee advance its goals for those with IDD.