Co-creating a Community Cafe

So this is my first blog post for MIC, and it’s this part that I find not as easy to do: the start, the introduction. I think it’s because I have so much to say I don’t know where to start, so many ideas to share with you I want to tell you everything, all of them, now!!

But I can’t, because just blurting them all out in one go just will not do them enough justice, I want to talk about them and give them space and air.

That is how this started, this blog idea, because Camille came to talk to Sophie about writing a newsletter, and writing about the Community cafe was something they thought would be a good idea, so my mind went to ‘what should I talk about’ …… 100+ different ideas and subjects all came to mind and boom – maybe you should write it in a blog!

And the reason for that, writing about the Community Cafe, is because that is my position here at MIC, I am Natalie, the Community Food Co-ordinator, Hi! I did a little intro here:

I think one of the most exciting parts of this position here is the opportunity to co-create a real Community Cafe, somewhere that listens and responds to the wishes and needs of the people in the community. Before I came on board Sophie and James did consultations and questionnaires about what people wanted to have here, so we are basing the menu on this. The main ideas were local, organic, fresh, nutritious food and drinks at affordable prices, and these are all things I am super passionate about, which is so exciting!

We are so fortunate here in Buckfastleigh, we are surrounded by vast areas of local organic growers, so not only can we keep food miles low, we know exactly where our food is coming from, it’s organic which is better for the environment and ourselves, we are supporting local businesses and families and it’s fresh!

Something I am also personally very passionate about is inclusive spaces: each and every member of our wide and beautifully varied community in Buckfastleigh is welcome here. One of the specific aspects of this within the cafe is allergies, intolerances and dietary requirements, so the cafe kitchen will be an allergy compassionate kitchen. We are going to make all the main offerings gluten free, plant based and nut free as a basic menu, with lots of additional goodies that can added to your meal or snack that will hit that glutenfull or dairy packed need. Those extras will be outside of the main kitchen space, so no cross contamination, which is important to know when you are an allergy sufferer. It will initially be made in another kitchen, bought in, and then when the community kitchens are up and running, made in there.

To give an example, we are going to be making a main bowl dish each lunch time, like a Dahl or Curry, beautifully fresh local veggies, carefully sourced spices, and fresh grown herbs from our edible garden. To add to your flavour packed bowl there will be fresh baked gluten free bread or seedy crackers, our own made ferments and pickles, a fresh Hylsten bread, or local cheeses.

Add to this our coffee roasted just down the road that supports a women led business in Rwanda and you are hopefully now imagining just a little slice of what we are going to create here.

As our ideas are evolving we would love to hear more about what our community wants and needs, so please get in touch and let us know!

Co-creating a Community Cafe

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to top