A new collaboration in Terre Haute is helping women recovering from addiction gain work experience and develop soft skills through two student-run startups. The partnership connects the women with volunteer shifts at Milky Way, a cereal bar, and The Edge, a coffee shop, which are housed at Meeting Grounds, gathering space run by Next Step Foundation Inc. Launch Terre Haute Executive Director Shelley Klingerman says her coworking organization helped connect the young entrepreneurs behind the businesses with Next Step, which offered the venue and the available work force. In an interview with our partners at WTHI-TV, Next Step Executive Director Dana Simon called the collaboration "a great fit."

The coffee shop and cereal bar hosted a grand reopening event this week in the Vigo County City. Klingerman says the Meeting Grounds location supports the college student entrepreneurs as they test their startup business concepts and provides training for women aiming to get back on-track. She lauds the arrangement for "helping two completely separate populations in an innovative and unique way."

Klingerman says the partnership was born from stepping back and looking outside of the traditional entrepreneurial and business circles. Additional collaborations of this nature, she tells Inside INdiana Business, could bloom in the future: "I think there’s definitely more opportunities. It’s kind of a strange fit when you look at a recovery center with a cowork space, but if you look at it, it’s a perfect marriage, if you will, and it’s benefiting two groups of people greatly."

In addition to the Meeting Grounds, Next Step offers mentoring, recovery, education and residency recovery services and it has housing accommodations for clients working toward recovery in four separate homes owned by the organization. You can connect to more about the Next Step Foundation by clicking here and The Meeting Grounds space by clicking here.

Additional collaborations of this nature, Launch Terre Haute Executive Director Shelley Klingerman tells Inside INdiana Business, could bloom in the future.