'Truly incredible': New Tannum cafe celebrates early success
SOCIAL enterprise IE Cafe is officially open and has all the ingredients to make a happy customer.
The Tannum Sands cafe is owned and operated by Gladstone Community Linking Agency and is aimed at creating employment opportunity for people living with a disability.
At yesterday's official launch GCLA chief executive Tracey Alexander said it felt great to cut the ribbon for a project that had been months in the making.
She said a soft launch a few weeks ago allowed the enterprise's eight full-time staff time to prepare.
"The first day we had three people lined up at a time so the community is very supportive of the social enterprise and hopefully we'll just keep growing,” Ms Alexander said.
She said IE Cafe was an example of how people with disabilities could have valued roles.
Front counter employee Charmaine said she looked forward to gaining various life skills in her job.
"The idea is we're going to be training up in one role and swapping around so we get a bit of variety,” Charmaine said.
She said her favourite aspect of the role was interacting with customers and she encouraged them to give feedback.
"If we don't know it's broken we can't fix it,” she said.
"The community has been fantastic, very supportive and very open with suggestions, improvements we may need to make and very few criticisms.
Gladstone Regional councillor Rick Hansen also attended the launch and said IE Cafe was a demonstration of GCLA's values of "embracing each other's humanity and enabling locals to live their best life and realise their potential”.
"To see the team here now and look at what they've achieved in such a short time is truly incredible,” Cr Hansen said.
He said the social enterprise's success was made greater by what it gave back to the community.
"... profit generated by IE Cafe goes back into creating innovative opportunities for people living with a disability,” Cr Hansen said.
The cafe at 1/1 Garnett St, Tannum Sands is open Monday to Friday 6am-2pm and serves breakfast, lunch and snacks.