Maui jewelry designer creates business for autistic brother, employs others with disabilities

WAILUKU (HawaiiNewsNow) – One look at Chris Chou and you immediately know he’s extraordinary. Whether it’s his bedazzled sneakers, bright jacket, or stylish hair, you know he’s up to something great.

“I’ve always wanted to be a designer because I want to be more like Tiff,” Chris said.

Chris’ older sister Tiffany Chou is a jewelry designer. Her creations have appeared around the world. After living in New York City for a decade, she returned home to Maui in 2019 to become her brother’s primary caregiver.

“Chris wanted a job in jewelry, so we started our own business,” Tiffany said.

They started doing pop-ups and selling his jewelry in a local hotel to visitors from around the world.

“They say they are very beautiful,” said Chris.

They became so popular, now they are able to hire more people like Chris – like Nathan and Juna.

“I’ve seen people with the full spectrum of disabilities, from very high functioning to less functioning, and even people who have very mild disabilities still have trouble finding work,” Tiffany said.

Their first brick and mortar store is opening soon in the heart of Wailuku. Just look for the sign that says, “Depo Market” off Market Street.

“Chris was adopted from Cambodia and found at a market called Depo Market,” Tiffany said. “So I thought it was a really special name.”

The Chou siblings hope their business will inspire others to give everyone a chance.

Copyright 2022 Hawaii News Now. All rights reserved.

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