Over the past few years, SEN members have increasingly referred to various of community café activity taking place within their social enterprise. Though primarily an issue for members whose core work relates to community food, community café activities are also commonly linked to thematic areas such as health, employability, culture and sport. This is particularly relevant where ‘space and place’ or ‘creating connections’ are a key element of a social enterprise’s core objectives.
The sustainability of community cafés, however, is a common concern for SEN members across Scotland. With most cafés only able to sustain a modest income stream, it is generally accepted that running
a café which regularly returns a profit is one of the most difficult challenges that members face.
Despite this, there appears to be a growing interest in community café activity – specifically in how using food as a unifying force can help address issues around sustainability, community cohesion and inclusion.
In these publications, we will draw on the experience of SEN members who run established community cafés to outline the opportunities and potential pitfalls of each scenario.
Read the full paper here.