Dough will continue to rise as a bakery on Bowen Road in Nanaimo has re-opened as a social enterprise for Island Crisis Care Society.
After purchasing Nanaimo Bakery and Confectionery Ltd. last July, under its for-profit wing Rising Hope Services Inc., the society has re-opened it as Nanaimo Bakery and Café today, April 13, in part to assist people experiencing homelessness transition back into the community.
The bakery will served baked goods, light breakfasts and lunches and the society envisions that it will support programs “in a sustainable way [while] providing opportunities for employment and connection for people who may have been marginalized in the community.” The society’s Project Rise employability program offers work experience to clients, said a press release, and bakery profits will help sustain such programming.
“Our vision is to have more than just a bakery,” said Corrie Corfield, ICCS assistant executive director, in the press release. “We want to have a community hub, where people from all walks of life can come together and enjoy not just a coffee and a pastry, but celebrate being together – the joy of community.”
Along with baked goods, such as pastries and breads, the bakery will also serve some new fare, including avocado toast with sweet potato chutney and breakfast sandwiches with freshly baked English muffins, as well as cinnamon buns, which Joshua Nelson II, bakery manager and head chef, guarantees customers will make return visits for.
“We want our customers to experience a real West Coast moment when they enter the café, with excellent service and products,” Nelson said in the press release.
Violet Hayes, Island Crisis Care’s executive director, said the venture will help the society realize its vision.
“Across all of our programs, we are committed to making a lasting difference to our clients – people who have experienced homelessness and marginalization in our community,” Hayes said in the press release.