A host of not-for-profit food and drink businesses have popped up around the city, committed to giving back to the community.
A not-for-profit hospitality organisation, gives support and hospitality industry training to disadvantaged youths.
STREAT’s founders, Rebecca Scott and Kate Barrelle, were inspired by KOTO, a training program and restaurant providing street youth with job opportunities in Vietnam. STREAT also recently won a national award for being Australia’s Most Innovative Social Enterprise.
Ground level, Melbourne Central,
Cnr Swanston and LaTrobe Streets
An ethically-minded espresso bar and store, the venue supports disadvantaged producers to improve their lives through business and commerce. Coffee is the speciality here – try the espresso bar’s signature blend, combining pulped natural Brazilian beans with estate Colombian and Guatemalan coffees. Then browse the Fairtrade retail outlet’s wooden toys and puzzles, homewares, blankets, coffee, chocolate, fashion and clothing. They have Australia’s largest range of Fairtrade and ethical chocolate with over 70+ varieties in stock.
277 Lt Lonsdale St
Kinfolk is a social enterprise café with a unique twist – whilst serving healthy produce and quality espresso, all profits are directed to international and local development projects. At the point of sale customers are invited to choose which of the projects like YGAP’s youth leadership project in Ghana or Urban Seed’s Credo Café supporting inclusion for Melbourne’s homeless and marginalised they want to support.
673 Bourke St
0423 229 953
Melbourne Rooftop Honey
Another Melbourne success story worth buzzing about is Melbourne Rooftop Honey. Their aim is to provide lip-smackingly good honey and also to raise awareness of the importance of bees in our lives. A number of restaurants around town use the honey in their cooking, like Bomba and The Town Mouse, while Clementine’s in Degraves St, has jars for sale.
The main reason for the success of urban bees is the variety of flora growing in the city compared with what is now present in much of the countryside which often has just one crop dominating an entire area.
Uni mates Simon Griffiths and Zanna McComish had both spent time volunteering in Africa and witnessed first hand the poverty and the hardship that civilians experience every day. Taking the idea from the numerous street bars they fell in love with over there, they opened their take on street drinking with Shebeen – a 100 per cent not-for-profit watering hole.
How does it work? Every beer, wine, cider and margarita sale sends funds back to that drink’s country of origin. The cocktails on the menu are inspired by the 11 countries they sponsor, the decor is inspired by the colours of Kenya, and the stripped back, wooden interior and laneway location is just like sitting on a side-street in Africa.
36 Manchester Lane