The Circle Cafe

The National Lottery to fund training café at The Circle

The Circle is opening a training café at its Staffa Place premises. The café will train young people to work in the café and offer employment. We have joined forces with Barnardo’s Works, Dundee City Council and Leisure and Culture Dundee to apply to the Community Lottery Fund for funding to start-up this innovative project. Designed to support the needs of looked after young people and care leavers, the café will employ a Café Manager, Supervisor and several Café and Events Assistants. The Manager and Supervisor positions have been funded by The National Lottery Community Fund Young Start.

The first phase of the project will be recruiting the new staff and then they will get to work on improving the physical space with the young people who are selected to take part in this project.

The project team plan, with support from additional funders, to offer employment for a year and access to this bespoke training programme.  The young people will also be offered a range of accredited training tailored towards the hospitality industry. While working in the Café there will be opportunities for the young people to access 1-1 mentoring, growth mindset coaching, wellbeing workshops and physical activity. The Circle and our partners will be looking to work with local businesses to promote the project and to provide future employment and support.

Kirsty Thomson, CEO of The Circle, welcomed the funding announcement. “The funding from the Community Lottery Fund will help us offer young people paid employment opportunities as well as the training and support they need to start careers in hospitality and raise awareness of the different industries for employment in the City. As well as the practical experience it will allow the young people to become more confident, increase chances of employment and give them new skills within our community setting.  We would encourage local business from all sectors to come forward if they would like to be involved in any aspects of the project.“

Lesley Bollan, Team Manager at Barnardo’s Works Tayside said “Barnardo’s Works is delighted to be involved in this exciting new venture in partnership with The Circle, Dundee City Council Throughcare and Aftercare Service and Leisure and Culture Dundee.   The Cafe at the Circle aims to upskill, and train looked after young people and care leavers, providing them with a platform to develop employability skills required to secure and sustain employment.   Barnardo’s Works Tayside has over 11 years’ experience supporting vulnerable young people into employment and training, combined with the skills and experience of all the partners involved in this initiative, it has the potential to make a real difference to the lives of looked after young people and care leavers in Dundee.”

Jamie McBrearty, Leisure and Culture Dundee’s Growth Mindset Manager said “I am delighted to be involved in the project and to work with the partners who are pulling this together. I look forward to contributing to the programme.”

Alan Gunn from Dundee City Council’s Throughcare and Aftercare Service said “We are excited to be part of an initiative that will offer employment opportunities to young people who have left care. As a result of childhood adversity some of the young people may face barriers to progressing into employment. Along with the opportunity to earn a wage, the Circle Café will support the young people to overcome some of these challenges and introduce them to social enterprise”

Announcing today’s funding, totalling £1,864,384 to be awarded to 28 projects including The Circle Café, National Lottery Community Fund, Chair, Maureen McGinn, said: “Young Start helps ensure that Scotland’s next generation have the best chance by providing them with opportunities to develop their untapped talent and reach their potential. All of today’s successful projects are designed to engage and inspire young people to follow their dreams while building practical skills and confidence for the future. I am delighted to announce this latest investment totalling £1,864,384.”

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