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National Day for Helping the Disabled: Guangzhou bakery thrives in silence
Update: 2018-05-22     Source: ccrtv.com

Cash register closing, ice-maker churning...

At Silent Cake, a bakery in south China's Guangzhou City, the only sounds at the store are made from machines.

Most of the people who work there can't hear. They don't speak. And they don't need to. Communication goes by gestures, and the old-fashioned pen and ink.

The new deputy manager Wang Canran said this is a place where he feels at home. The 26-year-old from north China's Hebei Province, also said this has been the best job he's ever had. Wang told CGTN that he's responsible for many things in the role: cashiering, managing other people and minding all the products.

It's a job that allows little down time. But he said, "It makes me happy."

Silent Cake bakery in Guangzhou thrives in the quiet. /CGTN Photo

It's not easy for people like Wang to have a job that makes them happy. Even though China has already put in place a mandatory quota system. All companies must employ a quota of 1.5 percent of staff with disabilities.

But enforcement has been hard. And many are stranded in jobs that allow little interaction, or room for growth. Silent Cake's founder said he started the brand to take things into their own hands. Qiu Junkun, founder of the Silent Cake brand, said that it pains him to see these people rejected in the job market. "These are the people I care about. I know they're just as talented."

Opened in April, the shop is already starting to make ends meet. It's already doubled its staff. Applications come from around the country. Now only one of the thirty people there can speak.

A way to communicate /CGTN Photo

The bakery has also become somewhat famous. A student who came and visited on purpose told CGTN that, "I read about it from my social feeds and wanted to find out what it was like. Turns out, there's no inconvenience – it's just like other shops."

Another said the shop appealed to him because "This place feels so peaceful, and I would come here again." And such feedback is part of the reason why Wang and his colleagues say they want to hold onto the job, for a very long time.

Wang Canran, the new manager, said he planned to work even harder in the coming years and open his own bakery branch.

Asked why he chose to stick to the same career path, he said, "Because it makes me happy."

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