One Cup at a Time | Social Enterprise

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Latest Success: 10 new program graduates; cooler and fridge upgrades

Biggest Challenge: Being a sustainable non-profit; human resource needs for different program areas

Next Up: Another group of participants begin the program; environmentally-friendly catering service

The Ask: Guest presenters, volunteers with HR/Marketing expertise, customers!

Full Story
Working as a café barista wouldn’t be thought of as life-changing to most, but to Tammy, a participant of the One Cup at a Timeemployment training program, working as a barista altered the course of her life.

“I cannot emphasize the importance of this program,” she exclaimed, after boldly sharing her struggle to overcome addiction, a criminal record and various mental health concerns by accepting a job at the John Howard Society’s café.

One Cup at a Time is an employment training program “with the intent to give individuals with barriers to employment experience within a fully functional café, open and operational to the public,” explains Program Manager, Elliott Penner.

Not only does the program provide participants with basic barista and food prep skills, it helps them achieve the required certifications and transferrable skills necessary to procure employment in the “real” world following graduation.

Since winning at ChangeUP, 10 participants have graduated from the One Cup program and the café itself has been able to make some much needed repairs and upgrades.

“With this

[prize] money we were able to ensure our commercial cooler was working and [purchase a] new fridge – both things are really important to the functioning of any café,” Penner explained gratefully.

“The program couldn’t have moved forward without the support of our community and specifically the money and support received from the ChangeUP event.”

Since graduating from the One Cup program, Tammy has moved out of a supportive living environment, secured not one but four jobs, gives back to her community by volunteering, and is now engaged!

“It was not only informative but it was fun,” Tammy explains of the program. “[It] gave me the boost in confidence I needed to help find my self-esteem…They taught me to live life on life’s terms.”


One Cup at a Time could still use your help with a few areas. Part of the training program includes guest presenters who speak to a variety of areas – anyone interested in speaking is welcome!

They’re also looking for volunteers with HR or marketing expertise to help build up their new catering service.

Lastly, you can always support this tremendous program by stopping by for a cup of coffee. You can even take two at a time, if you’d like.

*Associated with the John Howard Society of Central and South Okanagan.

— By Rochelle Heinrichs

By | 2017-04-18T10:59:53+00:00 March 14th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

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