Enterprising hit for modern day Leeds community day centre

The new Cielo cafe in the Crossgates Shopping Centre.
The new Cielo cafe in the Crossgates Shopping Centre.
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A NEW cafe at a shopping centre in east Leeds will plough all it’s profits back into community projects in and around Crossgates.

Cielo, which already has a cafe on Garforth’s High Street and a smaller place inside Garforth library, is a social enterprise organisation.

It aims to improve community cohesion and sees it’s place on the high street as a ‘modern day community centre’.

Cielo, formerly called Baraka, is the brainchild of Nick and Linda Castle and operates with the help of more than 40 volunteers of all ages, ranging from 14 years to elderly people. one helper was in her 80s.

Owner Nick, from Garforth, said: “We are delighted to have branched out and opened in the Crossgates Shopping Centre. It is going really well. We have given out £3,000 of profits for use in community projects in Garforth and hope to soon do the same in the Crossgates area.

“Anything which helps broaden and boost the community is worthy of our help.”

He said the social enterprise ideas came after they decided they wanted to explore what it means to build community cohesion: “We asked what does it mean to people to have a modern day community centre? Times are changing and we want to provide something for all.”

He says the project runs with the help of volunteers from all walks of life and they have help from people with learning difficulties or those who may have suffered with their mental health.

Nick adds: “it is somewhere people can gain confidence.

“Instead of setting up our own community projects thought it was better to plough cash back into what is already going on around us.”

The organisation also runs a roasterie, for roasting coffee beans and works with several charities.

More details about Cielo at www.cielouk.com or for more details about becoming a volunteer.

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