The café, located at Japara’s St Judes residential aged care home has partnered with not-for-profit disability support organisation Wallara to provide training and employment opportunities to people with disability.
Victorian Minister for Disability, Ageing and Carers, Luke Donnellan says the partnership helps build friendships and community spirit.
“It excites me that we’ve got two wonderful organisations coming together, to stimulate people’s lives, give people dignity and bring the community into the home.”
Manager at St Judes Home Milly Kuranage says the decor provides residents with a dose of nostalgia.
“One of our residents told me that the decor of the café took her back to a lovely place that she had visited as a 9-year-old child," she says.
“Our residents and families have embraced the café and I’ve received a number of compliments from families and residents alike.”
One of Wallara’s clients Daniel Gray has been enjoying working in the café where he takes customer orders, serves and makes coffees.
“I’m looking forward to learning new skills and maybe opening my own café one day, which I would call Cool Kitchen.”
Sally Karnakowski says she enjoys learning customer service, money handling and barista skills.
The café also draws on inspiration from yesteryear as it is decorated with vintage kitchen memorabilia, including cake tins, tea canisters, cooking utensils and advertisements.
The café is open on Mondays and Wednesdays from 9 am to 3 pm with increased hours expected in the New Year.