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HyderabadAutistic 22-year-old Hyderabadi opens bakery defying odds

Autistic 22-year-old Hyderabadi opens bakery defying odds

Published: 28th Feb 2021 12:11 am | Updated: 27th Feb 2021 10:57 pm

Hyderabad: They are not called differently abled or children with special needs without a reason. They are called so, because they are special, and some actually break all barriers to prove that, like 22-year-old Roshan Varghese of Mehdipatnam.

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Roshan, who has Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), has managed to look beyond any limitations, including that of nonverbal autism, and is now running a well-known bakery, Mom’s Cakes and Bakes, in the city. His mother, Marie, helps him with the orders. That is not all. Today, Roshan’s cakes are exported to places like Canada, the United Kingdom, Bahrain and even the United States, apart from cities like Mumbai and States including Kerala.

Although he has to struggle a bit to talk, Roshan has much to say about his venture when asked. On his iPad, which he uses to communicate, he shares that his family’s support is very essential for him. “ASD presents with a lot of hardships, but I followed my passion. My family’s unwavering support made my journey easier, and helped me lead a respectful life,” he says.

Roshan was diagnosed with ASD when he was only two years old, shares Marie. “During Christmas each year, when I would bake cakes for our friends and family, he would observe me carefully. When he was 14, I was working on a cake for Christmas, and he started telling me what to put next, and the correct quantity too. So, I decided to let him bake a cake on his own, and that turned out to be very good. Roshan was very happy. He was very focused and attentive while baking – something he struggled with otherwise,” she says.

That’s when the family decided to open a bakery, to keep Roshan engaged. “We asked our family and friends to order from us if there was an occasion. Everyone was very helpful, and the orders poured in,” says Marie.

Roshan’s sister, Sharon, created a website and a Facebook page for the venture. “Roshan’s most famous cake is his Rum cake, and we get several orders of it during Christmas. It gets very stressful at times, because we need to make cakes for our family and friends as well. However, the work gives Roshan a sense of accomplishment,” she says.

Although, sometimes they have to deal with large orders, they never compromise on quality. “I have been baking for years. We make the cakes traditionally and without compromising on quality of ingredients,” the mother-son duo adds.

What is ASD?

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a complex syndrome which consists of a set of developmental and behavioral features. People who have ASD can struggle with focus organisation, memory, time management and emotional control.

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