A local community café in Kesgrave, which hires vulnerable young people, purchases new easy-to-use coffee machine thanks to a grant from local councillor.
Cllr Stuart Lawson, local ward member for Kesgrave, donated £1,000 from his Enabling Communities Budget to help local community café, Café 66, purchase a new easy-to-use coffee machine.
Sharon Terry, one of the managers at Café 66, said: “We are delighted to have purchase a new coffee machine courtesy of Cllr Stuart Lawson. This really is so much more than just a coffee machine – it is enabling our café staff to easily and safely make hot drinks without having to rely on someone else to help them, which gives them great pride and further strengthens their self-confidence and independence.”
The donation, which was made in March 2020, enabled the café to pay for the new coffee machine, which means the café staff can now make the hot drinks themselves with the touch of one button, instead of having to rely on managers or volunteers to make it for them.
Cllr Lawson said: “This is a wonderful community café in Kesgrave, which is staffed by young people with learning difficulties and disabilities – giving them a unique opportunity to gain new skills in a supportive environment and to build self-confidence.
“Before the arrival of the new coffee machine, café staff were relying on a manager or volunteer to make the hot drinks, which they would then serve. However, thanks to the new machine, staff are now able to make their own hot drinks with the touch of one button, which only helps to install more pride and self-confidence in these fantastic young people.”
East Suffolk Council’s Enabling Communities Budgets support activities delivered by community, voluntary and social enterprise organisations.
In a response to Covid-19, all councillors allocated £1,000 from their 2020/21 Enabling Communities Budget towards a Covid-19 Hardship Fund. A further £45,000 was added to the fund from some budgets, though some councillors chose to donate directly to local groups.
This means a total of £306,000 has been allocated from the New Homes Bonus (funding generated through new houses built in the district) for 2020/21, giving each councillor a Enabling Communities Budget of either £5,500 or £6,500 to spend on community projects or to develop new projects in their ward to tackle local need.
Previous projects which have benefitted from Enabling Community Budget funding include play areas, village hall refurbishments and equipment, community events, projects supporting people with disabilities and the purchase of defibrillators.
Community groups wishing to apply for the funding should contact their district councillor or visit the Enabling Community Budgets page.