Student-run café opens in Kirkintilloch

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A newly opened student-run café has opened in Kirkintilloch Town Centre thanks to the generosity of the John Mather Trust.

Mather’s Café, situated in the Kirkintilloch Campus, has opened to staff, students and the community of Kirkintilloch after a state-of-the-art training kitchen was installed with funding donated by the John Mather Trust, which was set up to benefit young people in the West of Scotland and help them into careers.

The café is run by students from the College’s Faculty of Supported Learning to offer a catering service within the campus while developing the students' hospitality and employability skills for the future.

With a strong track record in hospitality, the Faculty made the decision to open the café to give practical experience to students on the Employability in Action course, who have trained hard in areas of food preparation, health and safety, and customer service. With many different learning disabilities from ADHD to Autism, the café aims to give students the confidence and necessary skills to find a career and become independent for the future. 

David McShane, Head of Faculty for Supported Learning, said:

“We are thrilled to have opened Mather’s Café to the students, staff and community of Kirkintilloch.

“The café was an opportunity which came about as a direct result of strong partnership working. We are indebted to the generosity and understanding of the John Mather Trust who have being strong supporters of the Faculty of Supported Learning for several years. The support of the Trust was crucial in allowing Additional Support Needs students to access a vocational opportunity whilst achieving accreditation for their learning.

“Students within the Faculty have often excelled within the area of hospitality, so to give them a further opportunity to develop their skills in the area while providing students in the Kirkintilloch Campus a much needed catering service, a new course was designed by Vivienne Pollock, Curriculum Quality Leader and Jacqueline Harper, Lecturer, which would encompass employability skills within a Hospitality environment.

“We are proud of all our learners who are working hard within the course whilst at the same time providing a vibrant and busy café which serves the needs of a great many people within the community.”

The café will be open Monday-Thursday 10:30-13:30 for lunch serving freshly made soup, sandwiches, paninis and salads. A main course will also be available each day including bolognese, macaroni cheese and chicken korma, all made on the premises.

On Fridays the café will be open from 10:00-11:30 for full Scottish breakfast.

All food is made from fresh produce. Salt and oil are only used when required in the preparation of food.

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