• Tom

The Success Of The Pop Inn Open Day

What a fabulous day at our open day on 28th April at The Together Centre. It was wonderful to see so many people turn out to find out what we are offering at The Paws and Paints Pop Inn!

There was an array of specialty cakes: vegan chocolate cake; gluten free cupcakes, carrot cake and raspberry cake on sale. There was also free fruit available. We were delighted to raise over £100 which will go toward our AMP-D project – animals, music, performance and drama group for young people. We talked to our visitors about using the café room as a dog friendly space. Bring your friendly dog out for stroll with you and join us for a brew and cake - let Fido try his paws at our dog games. People agreed this would allow visitors without dogs to enjoy some canine company and make new friends too.

Helena Rainbow delivered a rousing performance of old time favourites like “Daisy Daisy” and

“Scarborough Fayre” which made a brilliant cheerful atmosphere with most people joining in. The afternoon singalongs will become a regular feature when the café gets going on 17 th July perfect for those living with dementia and their carers.

What was the feedback?

Our feedback indicated 100% agreement that the service is needed in Tameside. A majority agreed a dog friendly café with creative activities was unique and would foster a sense of community. Many also stated that they believed having the creative workshops would help to bring people together. However, there was a split in public opinion over the cost. Most people felt the Pop Inn represented value for money at £6 for 30mins – consume as much cake and drinks as you can manage, additional creative activities and the sensory room all available at NO extra cost! This was seen as value for money especially when compared with what you get at other coffee shops! But concern was expressed that people on low income would miss out. We would offer the option to “Pay It Forward” by paying for someone else who could not afford the fees. We also enter the payment ticket into a free raffle which is drawn at the end of the café day - winner gets free entry for one hour at a café on a Tuesday of their choice. This could also be donated toward pay it forward allowing us to offer complimentary vouchers to those who would like to visit but are struggling to fund the session. This is in keeping with our hope that the café will be a place where community comes together to support each other.

Whats next?

Our volunteers are eagerly waiting to start their training programme on 29 th May 2018. They come from various backgrounds; young people leaving care, pupil referral service’ rehabilitation units at Tameside Hospital. We are delighted to have lottery funding to deliver this training which will cover animal welfare, food hygiene, art & crafts and kitchen skills. By supporting the café, you are making a difference to someone’s chances of getting a paid job!

The official launch of the Pop Inn will be Tuesday 17th July 2018.

Our volunteers (and a couple of young visitors) at the Paws & Paints Pop Inn open day

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