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Cestria serves up £3,000 for community café

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Cestria serves up £3,000 for community café

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Published by Craig Downs for Cestria Community Housing in Housing and also in Communities

Paul Hadden of Cestria Community Housing pictured with Michelle Melvin and Alison Younger from Great Lumley Community Centre Paul Hadden of Cestria Community Housing pictured with Michelle Melvin and Alison Younger from Great Lumley Community Centre

A local community centre in a Durham village is set to benefit from a communal café, thanks to a donation of £3,000.

The Great Lumley Community Centre, in Great Lumley, Chester-le-Street, has now raised sufficient funds to provide a café, which will bring the local community together.

The centre itself raised £1,500 and also received a donation of £1,000 from a Durham County Council fund.  Now, the community café is set to get the go ahead after it received a cheque for £3,000 from Chester-le-Street social landlord, Cestria Community Housing.

Earlier this year, the centre received help from Cestria after the Association helped it to secure its own youth worker and support worker, which are supplied and funded by Durham County Council youth services.

It is hoped that the café, which will be run by volunteers, will help address the benefits and issues of social inclusion, health and community interaction.  The aim is that the café will become a ‘hub’ for the whole community and will create an environment where young and old alike can meet and interact.

Cestria Community Housing also funded a two-day training course for two members of staff from the centre on how to run a community café.  The course, which was held at the Trafford Hall National Communities Resource Centre in Manchester, taught them everything they needed to know about running a café, including offering healthy eating, portion sizes and costings. They were also able to pick up ideas from other groups who have already successfully set up and established their own community cafes.

Alison Younger from Great Lumley Community Association who attended the course said: “The course was very useful and gave us an insight into how to run a local facility like this.

“It was good to meet other groups which are already established within their communities and to find out how they have made them so successful.  We picked up a lot of good ideas which we will implement here in Great Lumley.

“We have already spoken to a number of local residents about our ideas and they are very excited to see this much needed facility open.  I would like to thank Cestria Community Housing and Durham County Council for making this happen – it is greatly appreciated by all members of our community.”

Paul Hadden, Community Engagement Officer at Cestria Community Housing said: “We are very pleased to be able to present this money to the centre to help them set up a community café.  We have worked with the centre for a number of years and have built up a very good relationship with the local community.

“I am really looking forward to seeing the cafe open and see the impact that a facility like this can have a on a local community such as Great Lumley.”

Andrew Megginson, Area Action Partnership (AAP) coordinator for Chester-le-Street and District, said: “This is a great local project which will help support AAP priorities including assisting community facilities and contributing to better health.”

The café it expected to open in October.

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