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Flowers with a Purpose


National Entrepreneurial Business Model, Vaseful, Going the Distance

For Distribution on April 02, 2009: Vaseful Flowers and Gifts is an entrepreneurial business that is own and operated by Community Options, Inc. Community Options, Inc. is a national nonprofit organization that develops innovative housing and employment supports for people with disabilities. Vaseful is the only nonprofit flower shop in the entire country. Located in New Brunswick, NJ, Vaseful is a full-service flower shop with an expansive reach. Vaseful can deliver anywhere in the United States.

The unique component about Vaseful is that it serves as training/employment opportunity for people with disabilities. People with disabilities have been working in the store since its opening over 10 years ago. The skill set that people gain by working at Vaseful is comprised of customer service, maintenance, clerical, and a specialization in floral design.

Vaseful is thrilled to welcome a new head Florist, Melissa Alancourt. Melissa comes to Vaseful with over 16 years in the industry and has been around flowers her entire life. “I am excited to be working at Vaseful where I am hopeful I can help to bring the shop to the frontlines of premier wedding services and special event planning,” says Melissa.

Melissa is not alone. Marissa Alexander, a veteran employee of Vaseful is thrilled to have Melissa on board at the shop. Marissa completed the American Institute of Floral Designers (AIFD) training program and has complete hands on experience. “My hopes are for Vaseful to be a place where individuals can succeed in their goals through a consistent customer base, “says Marissa.

“Supporting people with disabilities through a business model like Vaseful, we are revolutionizing the manner in which people experience real work for real pay,” says Christopher Dixon, Executive Director of Community Options, Inc. “Vaseful is replicable entrepreneurial business model that not only serves the need of our customer base but people with disabilities in an inclusive setting, “Dixon added.

It really does make a difference where you order your flowers. Next time the need arises, think of Vaseful by going to or by calling 1877-Vaseful and make our cause, your cause.

Pictured Left Melissa Alancourt Florist Marissa Alexander Vaseful Manager(Pictured left, Melissa Alancourt, Florist, Marissa Alexander, Vaseful Manager)

Press Release .pdf