It’s just over 12 months now since Lucy Powell MP cut the ribbon and we launched Swan Kitchens, our on-site cafe and catering social enterprise. So we thought it would be a good time to take stock.
You want numbers? We got numbers!
The cafe has sold 1960 healthy main meals (starting at £1 to be affordable for people on low incomes), 4500 sandwiches and 6584 cups of tea and coffee. We get food from FareShare Greater Manchester to reduce food waste, and use Fairtrade ingredients whenever possible. We always have vegetarian and vegan options.
The outside catering operation has delivered 53 bookings, feeding 660 people.
58 disadvantaged people have taken up volunteering positions, gaining crucial skills and experience. 33 so far have moved on, which is great. The rest are still volunteering, which is also great because we need people to run the show.
Of those who have moved on 36% have gone into paid employment and 33% into volunteering.
Remember, Swan Kitchens volunteers have experience of homelessness, mental health problems, offending and substance misuse. These can all be massive barriers to getting a job and enjoying a positive future. The costs of this are huge, to the individuals involved, their families, and the local community. So I think you’ll get an idea of the positive impact of what we’re doing.