London vegan eatery Cafe Van Gogh is smashing poverty one plate at a time.
Good food cuts across barriers like nothing else. The Big Issue’s Liam Geraghty visits Brixton’s Cafe Van Gogh, which is offering a hand up to those on the margins.
Food can do more than fill bellies, it can provide the recipe for communities to come together to beat poverty and include some of the most marginalised in society. That’s the view of Cafe Van Gogh owner Steve Clarke.
Take a seat in his South London eatery – so-called because it is just around the corner from where Vincent van Gogh lodged in the 1870s – in the grounds of a church and it’s immediately clear that it is not your average spot for a quick bite.
The cafe offers a place of work for people with learning disabilities, mental health problems, special needs or for ex-offenders. All the profits are poured back into the business to cook up classes for struggling parents identified by LEAP (Lambeth Early Action Partnership) to beat food poverty, work with job coaches or workshops on gardening and more.