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Mohd Adli bin Yahya

Mohd Adli Yahya’s journey took an inspiring turn when he transitioned from his role as an Executive Director at Standard Chartered Foundation to open a café with a unique mission: teaching youths with autism to be self-reliant and earn a livelihood.

Behind Adli’s commitment lies a personal story—the story of his son, Luqman. Throughout Luqman’s early years, Adli found himself repeatedly defending his son’s behavior. He often had to apologize for Luqman’s repetitive habits, facing individuals who didn’t comprehend the nuances of autism. These encounters frequently culminated in heartfelt apologies from Adli.

Motivated by Luqman, Adli established the Autism Café Project as a remarkable social enterprise. Situated at MIJ International Hub in Kota Damansara, the project instills hope in individuals aged over 17 with autism or special needs. Adli’s vision for the Autism Café Project transcends mere employment; it aspires to create a secure environment for individuals with autism to work and extends a warm welcome to the public, fostering understanding of the condition. Unlike traditional workplaces that employ individuals with special needs, Adli encourages interested individuals to visit the café and engage with autistic individuals. The café serves as a platform for youth with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) to embrace life to the fullest, offering more than just coffee—it provides a range of social activities tailored specifically to youth with ASD.

Adli’s dedication to autism awareness earned him recognition from Bank Rakyat in 2018, where he received an award for his substantial contributions to promoting autism awareness and inclusivity in Malaysia. His work continues to make a profound impact on the lives of individuals with autism, empowering them to achieve independence and dignity while fostering greater awareness and understanding in society.

Making an impact is about opening new windows of opportunity to those in need.

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