About Joyful Jarra
Joyful Jarra is a refillery that sells package-free, sustainable goods, and prioritizes inclusive employment. Launched in June 2023, the business serves as a platform for two important values and passions in my life: environmental sustainability and advocating alongside and empowering others.
Refilleries exist to address the huge waste problem caused by plastic and packaging. They sell goods that are eco-friendly, sustainable, and package-free. Customers can [re]fill up on bulk grocery and products utilizing their upcycled glass jars and containers, thus eliminating plastic and packaging waste altogether. Refilleries also sell other package-free “grab-n-go” products. In this way, we contribute to a lower-waste, more sustainable lifestyle.
The name Joyful Jarra speaks to the jar (jarra is jar in Spanish) being reused and refilled, being sustainable, and being inclusive and accessible, thus promoting joy and goodness for people and the planet.
I was first introduced to the refillery concept in 2021, when one of my best friends, Bookworm, got a job working at Part & Parcel, a refillery in Durham, NC, that embraces neuro-inclusive employment. As a person with an intellectual disability label, Bookworm had never before experienced meaningful employment and affirmation of her full identity in the work place until she started working at Part & Parcel.
In the US, the vast majority of adults with intellectual/developmental disability labels and neurodivergent peoples are unemployed despite their ability, desire, and willingness to work. Joyful Jarra's goal is to model inclusive, meaningful, and supported employment, because people with intellectual/developmental disability labels can and should be employed in the community, earn competitive wages, and have access to diverse job opportunities.
Joyful Jarra offers cleaning and personal care products, and functions as a mobile shop popping up all over metro Atlanta. See our events calendar for more info.
I'm Veronica Apecena, and these are my two kiddos, Kin and ZiXin. I’m a multilingual Mexican-American from Fort Collins, Colorado, with a Master's in Disability Studies, and am known for being eco-conscious. I’ve lived in several different countries and states over the years, but am proud to call Atlanta home since 2018.
I’ve been engaged in disability advocacy, awareness, and inclusion, nationally and internationally, for over a decade. I'm passionate about addressing the employment gap experienced by folks with intellectual/developmental disability labels and neurodivergent individuals. Joyful Jarra is a professional as well as personal endeavor for me, as my daughter is developmentally disabled.