If it’s not already clear, we at SavinGreen love coffee. It makes us fee good, motivates us to achieve beyond what we achieved yesterday. Motivates us to change our lives. Not everyone uses this motivation to achieve the same thing. While some may consider writing 300 words in 20 minutes an achievement worth celebrating, some don’t have the opportunity to turn up to work, and struggle to get a job even though they desperately want one. Some simply don’t have the skills, or the experience, to make their way. Ways and Means aims to change this.

Located in Little Lonsdale the near the capital of change; parliament house, the Ways and Means coffee shop has quietly gone about using our caffeine addictions for good. An initiative of Youth Support Advocacy Service  (YSAS)  – the enterprise is founded upon the belief that the best way of helping vulnerable young people change their lives is by teaching them skills; fostering a sense of independence, proficiency and belonging. It’s about creating that change.

Simply sitting in the cafe is motivating (and this is before you even take a sip of the coffee). It’s a simple place, cluttered with tables and chairs like any other coffee shop. But what really sets this place apart is the staff. Put simply, the staff love their job. No, they don’t know what lactose free milk is, but the community is strong – they’re about making simple, tasty coffee that makes you happy. 

Rather than moving through as many people as they can, they stop; and take the time getting to know. It’s the kind of place that where you might go in looking for a caffeine fix but walk out having a little more pride in the human race. 

And their efforts aren’t going unrecognised. In 2016, they were a finalist in the ethical enterprise awards, and are financially supported by the likes of T2 and the Expresso Syndicate, whose products are stocked and proudly sold at the counter.

Like making good coffee, change doesn’t happen overnight. But it does happen. It’s just about having the right ways and means to get there. Have a coffee and be part of it.

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