9 Reasons Bar 9 Outreach is Helping the Community

By now most of Adelaide has heard about the amazing new concept that is Bar 9 Outreach; a cafe set up by Bar 9 founder Ian Callahan that does more than serve coffee. Its Whitmore Square location means it’s close to the main CBD homeless centre, and that’s no coincidence. Bar 9 Outreach aims to teach homeless men and women the basics of hospitality; customer service, how to make coffee and various other cafe skills. For those of you not in the know, we’ve made a list of nine ways Bar 9 Outreach is helping the Adelaide community.

1. It’s teaching homeless people workforce skills
Bar 9 Outreach has partnered with St Vincent De Paul (Vinnies) to work with people from the homeless shelter every day and teach them valuable hospitality skills. Trained professionals from Vinnies will select candidates who are eager to rejoin the workforce and put them in touch with the crew at Bar 9 Outreach. There they will be taught how to make coffee, bake bread and pastries and deal with customers among other skills. As well as teaching them a skill set that will enable them to rejoin the workforce, being able to complete a job and achieve something will hopefully rebuild the homeless person’s confidence, another vital part of the Bar 9 Outreach program. Because of this, Mr Callahan wants people not to come have coffee at Bar 9 Outreach because they feel obliged, but rather because the quality of the coffee and service is good.

Don’t come here out of pity, come here because you see value in what they’re offering – Mr Callahan

Bar 9 Outreach Founder Ian Callahan

Bar 9 Outreach Founder Ian Callahan

2. It helps trained homeless people find a job in hospitality
Once the candidates have been trained, the program doesn’t finish there. The crew at Bar 9 Outreach will then try and find job opportunities for these people, either in Bar 9 or at other cafes around Adelaide. While they will help candidates find jobs, the aim of the program is they won’t have to. Bar 9 Outreach wants people who have completed the program to have enough confidence and a strong mindset and skill set that they won’t need someone else to find them a job. They will then keep in contact with those who have rejoined the workforce, and organise regular catch-ups where they can ask about personal growth and achievements.

3. Daytime cafe staff can help volunteers prepare dinner at the soup kitchen
The space that Bar 9 Outreach is based in has always been a soup kitchen run by volunteers from Vinnies. In the evening, Bar 9 Outreach is packed down to allow the dinner service to still run. The Bar 9 staff also help prepare the dinner service in the afternoon, freeing up the volunteers who used to come in at 1pm. Any leftover goods from the day are also donated to the dinner service, so a few lucky diners might just get themselves some fresh Abbots & Kinney pastries for dessert!

Freshly Brewed Coffee

Freshly Brewed Coffee

4. It generates revenue for Vinnies
As mentioned before, Bar 9 Outreach is located in a soup kitchen. Rather than purchasing the space though, the cafe is paying rent to Vinnies, generating revenue for the charity which can then be used to further help the homeless!

5. It aims to raise awareness about the homeless
In a similar manner to Humans of New York, Bar 9 Outreach wants to publish stories of the homeless people they see through their training program. This is to raise awareness that not all homeless people are lazy, bad people or suffering from addictions, but rather to show that most of them have just been through unfortunate circumstances. They also want to create hope by following homeless people through their journey at Bar 9 Outreach and hopefully post loads of success stories for people around the world to read.

The Espresso Strietman ES02, One Of Bar 9's Unique Coffee Machines

The Espresso Strietman ES02, One Of Bar 9’s Unique Coffee Machines

6. It wants to raise awareness about how businesses can help disadvantaged people
Although Bar 9 Outreach is only in it’s first week, businesses have already been contacting founder Ian Callahan wanting to know how they can help. Having a strong social grounding in your business (or corporate social responsibility for those in the know) not only does the obvious by helping the community, but is also great for the business itself. If every business in the world focused on helping the community in one small way, even if the motivation is selfish, the world would be a much better place.

7. It’s creating a new space in a previously quiet area
There’s not a lot happening in Whitemore Square socially, other than a few cool second hand shops and Cafe Troppo. Bar 9 Outlook being based in this little corner of the city will hopefully bring a bit more life to the area, and encourage people around that area to come together and hang out. As Mr Callahan said;

The modern community space is the cafe. People go to a cafe to meet up, get work done and build relationships.

Bar 9 Outreach's Quirky Space

Bar 9 Outreach’s Quirky Space

8. It’s supporting individual farmers
Bar 9 has always prided itself on using ethical produce and beans, and Bar 9 Outreach is no different. The cafe will be using produce from individual and local farmers that they communicate with regularly and know the history of. While they place a lot of value in using organic produce, Bar 9 Outreach would prefer to use local produce from the Adelaide Hills than organic produce from California. In doing this, not only is Bar 9 Outreach supporting small farmers, but they’re also supporting the local economy.

9. It continues to spread the original Bar 9 specialty coffee message
Bar 9 has always been about creating awareness about the different styles of coffee and coffee techniques, whether it’s showcasing a rare form of brewing or having available different kinds of single origin and blended coffees. Bar 9 aims to enlighten people’s views or specialty coffee, and make it accessible to everyone, whether they want to appreciate something really unique or literally just skull a cappuccino and run.

Bar 9 has always aimed to enlighten people on coffee in a way that isn’t arrogant. We just want everyone to come, learn and enjoy coffee

If you’re as excited about the new Bar 9 venture as we are, you can visit them from 7:30am – 2pm Wednesday – Sunday.

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