Breaking barriers and brewing dreams: The Plant Room Café

The Plant Room suuported worker Brett Grimson sharing some scrambled egg on toast...

HammondCare and The Disability Trust have teamed up to launch The Plant Room cafe, an Australian first-of-its-kind initiative that will employ individuals with disabilities in a social enterprise co-located within a dementia care village at HammondCare Horsley. The cafe, operated by The Disability Trust, will serve barista-made coffee using beans from Illawarra-based Seven Miles and offer high-quality fresh food. It will be accessible to the local community, HammondCare Horsley residents, their visitors, and staff.

The Plant Room cafe, situated at Shone Ave, Horsley, is conveniently located next to a children’s playground, enhancing the experience for both visitors and the local community. The grand opening was attended by HammondCare CEO Mike Baird and The Disability Trust’s CEO, Carol Berry.

“We are delighted The Disability Trust has chosen to operate this café at Horsley that has the potential to change the lives of people as they pick up new skills and experience,” Mr Baird said.

The Disability Trust’s philosophy behind The Plant Room is to foster inclusivity by providing a safe space for employees to hone their skills and deliver exceptional food and coffee. The goal is to equip supported employees with the skills and experience needed to transition to open employment within the hospitality industry.

The cafe will employ two supported employees at a time, and local chef Lorenzo Pagnan will oversee training and food preparation. The Plant Room will be open for coffee and cafe food six days a week, from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. This venture represents a significant step forward in promoting inclusivity and empowering individuals with disabilities through meaningful employment opportunities.

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