Swindon Christian Community Projects (SCCP) have been awarded £41,000 by the People’s Health Trust, using money raised by Health Total through The Health Lottery.
The investment will be used by local residents to create a community café within Restore’s existing premises. The project will also offer cookery courses and woodwork courses, with the aim of bringing people together from the surrounding community and giving them the opportunity to share skills with each other.
Restore manager Ian Howard, pictured above, said: “The local people of The Parks, (those living in the area surrounding the Restore project) still talk about the loss of Gerry’s café – once an important community meeting place – which closed as part of the redevelopment of Cavendish Square in 2007. Ever since I have been here I have wanted to bring a café back into the heart of the community”.
Sam Rawlings, Deputy Project Manager and local resident added: “We want to provide a space for the people of Parks where they can meet and talk over a cup of tea or a meal and forge new friendships. We will be encouraging local people to begin to “own the space” and enjoy the community spirit that will be generated. We want to give a heart back to the people of Parks.”
The café will offer a range of hot drinks, snacks and meals as well as takeaway sandwiches and baguettes. Food will be prepared in the soon to be redesigned kitchen and served in a new café which is currently undergoing decoration.
The investment will also fund two new part-time jobs for Catering Supervisors, who will initially be responsible, alongside the project management team, for setting up the café and then to oversee the day-to-day planning and running of the café.
The new café will offer further work experience opportunities to volunteers. Volunteers currently working in the charity’s shop are typically unemployed and looking to return to the work place. Later on, Restore will also be running food preparation training courses for local people.
The plan is to have the facility up and running before the end of this summer with the courses starting during the autumn.
• Swindon Christian Community Projects (SCCP) were formed in November 2004 to facilitate the start of Swindon Foodbank. The aim of SCCP is “to relieve the poverty of people in Swindon and the surrounding area who are in conditions of need, hardship or distress in accordance with Christian faith principles”. SCCP draws on the strengths of local churches to enable them to oversee their two projects of Foodbank and Restore.
Foodbank provide food to those in crisis within Swindon whilst Restore aims to provide meaningful employment for those who are out of work, disabled or with learning difficulties. Foodbank and Restore have their offices in the charity shop at St John’s Church Hall, Whitbourne Avenue SN3 2LG and can be contacted on 01793 978045.
About Restore – Restore is a charity project ran by Swindon Christian Community Projects (SCCP), based in St John’s Church Hall, Whitbourne Avenue that aims to support people who are unemployed or unable to access the work place due to issues such as ill health or isolation. It has been in existence since June 2011. Restore collects and sales second hand furniture, clothing, books, toys and other house hold goods which they sell in their shop, on the premises, at very reasonable prices to the local community. Volunteers at Restore undertake a variety of tasks such as collecting and delivering goods, working in the shop and sorting the donations providing them with an opportunity to increase the skills and confidence enhancing their chances of getting into full time work. In 2014 Restore provided over 9000 volunteers hours helping over 50 volunteers. www.swindonrestore.weebly.co.uk
Swindon Restore: St Johns Hall, Whitbourne Avenue, Swindon SN3 2LG. T: 07932 978045 E: firstname.lastname@example.org