Fly Cup Catering Coffee Shop was the place to be last week, when all their regular customers, trainees, staff and volunteers turned up when local celebrity Norman Calder paid them a visit.
Business Manager Denise Belshaw explained: “Norman didn’t just pop in for a coffee, he was part of a visiting team from Comic Relief and the Daily Record.
“We were chosen as the project to be highlighted in the press, to tie in with the Great British Celebrity Bake-off which begins for Comic Relief this week”
Following the award of a grant to Fly Cup Catering by Comic Relief for £30,000 over a two year period the charity based in Inverurie, which provides training and employment opportunities for adults with learning difficulties, (trainees) has a bakery and coffee shop within the existing premises where up to 12 trainees per day get attend to learn cooking and baking skills, help out in the coffee shop, and undertake SVQ and Fly Cup qualifications.
Denise said: “The Comic Relief grant fund was awarded in order that we could rent the premises above our coffee shop.
“As our charity and the number of trainees we work with grows we felt we needed more space to create a unique training unit where our trainees are able to learn skills away from the kitchen.
“We are increasing the range of training opportunities to incorporate more independent living skills, such as budgeting, menu planning and laundry.
“Many of our trainees live in accommodation where they shop, cook and clean for themselves, we wanted to help them to develop the transferrable skills not just towards employment but also independent living where they become less reliant on care workers.
“We are always delighted to show off our project and the work we do here, and consequently when we heard that Norman was also coming everyone wanted to get involved and everyone was invited.
“As a result, most of the trainees came along for the day, even those who would normally be on a day off”.
The team at Fly Cup had asked regular customers to the coffee shop to come along and support the event.
A full coffee shop and a full kitchen kept Norman busy all afternoon.
“He was great”, Denise said, “He talked with everyone, enthused about the trainees and the skills we teach, and even signed off a bake off book for us to raffle over the coming weeks.”