Coffee project aids youth

20:54, Nov 21 2013
Rowan Johanson and Paul and Anashuya Fletcher
BREW BOOST: Rowan Johanson and Paul and Anashuya Fletcher are opening a cafe that will offer work experience to young people.

Three community-minded friends are using coffee to give young people a boost.

Rowan Johanson along with Paul and Anashuya Fletcher formulated the Roskill Coffee Project as a way to help young adults who might otherwise "fall through the cracks".

The cafe is set to open on December 9 and will be based in council-owned buildings in Wesley.

It will sell fair trade products and offer work experience to local young people.

"The goal is to run a profitable and successful cafe that responds to the local and global community," Mrs Fletcher says.

Two young people will be inducted for three-month stints, after which they will get help with their CVs and job hunting.


People aged 17 to 24 can be referred to the project in a variety of ways.

"It's really for young people who just can't get a foot in the door and they just need someone to help them out," Mrs Fletcher says.

There is also a philanthropic element, where profits will be fed into local ventures through the community trust the friends have created.

Mr Johanson says: "Part of the idea is about having good things that can generate funding for other positive projects, rather than pokies or something.

"It's just a business model that seems sustainable, it just needs people like us to put some time in.

Mr Fletcher says: "We realised that there are some key needs in our neighbourhood and thought this is a small way we could help out."

The project has been about two years in the making.

The trio have worked hard to negotiate permission to use the council-owned space from 7am to 3pm on weekdays and then leave it available for other uses.

"The biggest challenge will be sharing the space well," Mr Fletcher says.

The Roskill Coffee Project will be open from December 9 at 740 Sandringham Rd Extn, Wesley.

Visit roskillcoffee for information.

Central Leader