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“Not just friends, not just trainees and job coaches, here at Steps we are ‘family’ who are always ready to accept, understand and support each other.”
– Pear, Bangkok team.
Our goal is to give our trainees a great future
We believe our trainees deserve the best, so we’re really proud to have built an outstanding team of professionals here at Steps with Theera. It’s not just that we share a personal passion to achieve our mission. Everyone, from our vocational trainers to our team of therapists, is qualified to the highest standard, and our vocational training programme is UK-accredited.
Max Simpson – Founder
I have been working with young people with special needs for the past 10 years and it continues to be my passion.
Originally from the UK, I have worked in a variety of settings including learning support departments and with young people in care. I then went on to focus on transition to employment before moving to Bangkok and becoming deputy head of a special needs school.
After working there for 4 years, I saw the gap between education and employment and the need for transition services for people with special needs. I am one of the founders of Steps with Theera.
What I love about Steps: It is more than a training centre or coffee shop, it is a safe community space for all which promotes individuality. The community we work with have so many skills to offer and I love seeing them get the opportunity to do that in our real work environments.
Uang Hotrakitya – founder and pastry chef
I have always loved baking and I definitely have a sweet tooth myself!
After studying at Le Cordon Bleu as a Patisserie Chef I decided to start selling my cakes via Facebook. Soon after, I found out my son who has autism, had a gluten allergy. I quickly realised it is really difficult to buy allergen free foods, especially desserts, so I decided to specialise in gluten free and dairy free baking.
Since then I have opened 3 branches of Theera, a gluten free and vegan bakery (www.theerahealthybakeroom.com) and now I am very dedicated to our new project, Steps with Theera.
Providing employment opportunities for young adults with special needs is a topic close to my heart and something that is lacking in Bangkok. I am excited to see the many positive outcomes for our students and help them step towards a more independent and fulfilling future.
I found my interest in developmental psychology when three of my middle school classmates were children with special needs.
With a supportive environment from an inclusive school, I saw the different ways my friends interacted to the world and their ability to go beyond expectations. I pursued my passion in young people’s psychological growth through my higher education and career.
What I love about Steps: I believe in the vision of being an inclusive community, starting within a small coffee shop. With hands-on experience in a real-life working environment and collaborative support from staff, I can actually see the positive changes happening among all Steps trainees, which is the most rewarding part of my job.
Working with individuals with special needs has continuously been my passion since I was inspired by an amazing boy with learning differences 6 years ago in a piano class.
Having received M.Sc. in Mental Health and certification in applied behavior analysis, I have provided behavioral therapy and special education to children and young people at a special learning center and in a school environment.
Now at Steps with Theera, I continue to work with my favourite people, facilitating and coaching them in all the functional skills they need for living, and for making their dream jobs come true.
What I love about Steps: Not just friends, not just trainees and job coaches, here at Steps we are ‘family’ who are always ready to accept, understand and support each other.