This is a subscriber-only article. Join Entrepreneur+ today for access

Learn More

Already have an account?

Sign in
Entrepreneur Plus - Short White
For Subscribers

Need Inspiration? Three 'Doing Good' Success Stories We follow up with some of our do-gooders from past columns.

By Gwen Moran

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Book Learning
One of Jonah Zimiles' favorite e-mails came from a Listserv for parents of children with autism. It was from a mother whose autistic daughter had started working at Zimiles' Maplewood, N.J.-based bookstore, Words, which employs people who have the condition. "[My daughter] called me yesterday to tell me all about getting handed her first real paycheck. "I'm like … really normal now, Mom!' There have been few other times when she's been that proud of herself," the mom wrote.

Since being featured in our May 2010 issue, the indie bookseller has continued to grow, providing a welcoming environment for families of special-needs children. The shop has employed more than 25 people with autism during that time, and has added new opportunities to help them build skills. Zimiles has also launched "Second Sundays," which offers free hobby sampling--including karate, cooking and art--to special-needs families.

Next up: Zimiles is pondering requests he has received to expand to other towns, something he'll do, he says, "if the right opportunity comes along."