News Article

Macy’s Café is serving up big social impact for the Halton community

For many years, Amanda McDonald had a dream of running her own café. This dream became a reality when she opened the doors to Macy’s Café back in January.

Based in The Grange Community Centre in Runcorn, Amanda has created an authentic space at the heart of her local community.

Amanda McDonald is the face behind Macy’s Cafe

Amanda tells us that her food always went down a storm when cooking for family and friends: “I’ve a strong passion for good food and enjoy cooking. I’m well known among family, friends and many people for being an excellent cook – people always loved and enjoyed anything I cook!”

Having worked full time as a Project Development Officer for the Social Services at Halton Borough Council, Amanda decided it was now or never and contacted the Enterprise Hub at The Women’s Organisation to find out what steps to take next.

She says: “Once I made my decision to set up Macy’s café, I put all my thoughts and energy into it and started looking for help.  I got in touch with The Women’s Organisation and started working with my business Adviser, Huda, on business planning and regulation and I also attended specialist workshops.

“I received excellent advice, support, guidance and the encouragement that I needed to start the café, as well as help securing a business start-up loan.”

Since then, the business has gone from strength to strength and is currently employing 3 part-time staff, alongside a volunteer, who are all passionate about working in the café and serving the local community.

Along with serving fresh, quality cooked food at affordable prices, Macy’s café has a strong social objective and provides free hot meals, drinks and essential supplies to those in need.

This is in large part thanks to access to a community fridge and store cupboard which is filled with fresh food products, along with toiletries, sanitary products, nappies and clothing.

The stock receives generous donations from businesses and people alike and is built on an ethos of “take when you need, put back when you can”.

Going that step further, Amanda even provides free hot meals for those in need – becoming a vital lifeline for many in her community.

One man in particular had been living on the streets and depended on regular hot meals from Macy’s café and was provided with fresh clothes, toiletries and a tent, until he eventually found employment and a home of his own. That same man today contributes to the community fridge in support of others and is a regular to the café.

Macy’s café also hosts special social events for fostering teams who bring children and foster carers together and run activities for them.

The impact which Amanda and the team have been having on the local community hasn’t gone unnoticed and they were recently announced as winners of the Social Impact Award at The Women’s Organisation’s Enterprising Women Awards.

So, how is Amanda finding the world of self-employment so far? She says: “I love being self-employed, being my own boss while helping the community and people in need.  We’re trying our best to keep the balance of running a successful business, creating jobs for people and contributing to our local community.”

Macy’s Café can be found in The Grange Community Centre and you can check out their Facebook page here.

For more information about the support available to help start or grow your new business through Enterprise Hub, please contact 0151 706 8113 or enterprisehub@thewo.org.uk. 

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