You may not think of Coffee, Cake & Kink as a social enterprise. We didn’t, either. Over time, we have come to see that social enterprise has always been at the heart of our work. Alana Cassidy, one of CCK's founders, talks about what it means for us, and the community we serve.
When did you start associating the term 'social enterprise' with Coffee, Cake & Kink?
To be honest, it came out of our frustration with the prejudice we have encountered looking for new premises on the high street and having to explain ourselves again and again, only to never hear back. We needed something that landlords, and others, could understand and associate us with. When we started looking closely at what it was we were doing, and invited third party advisers to help us look at things with fresh eyes, it was suggested to us that we might be a social enterprise.
We then started looking at other organisations, seeing what they were doing and thinking ‘yes, we do that’. We looked at social enterprise websites and saw the other social enterprises that were out there, and the work they were doing in their communities. We started to see that you could act like a business and do social work at the same time. At the same time, given our name and the nature of our work, a ‘social enterprise’ association both strengthens the organisation by opening doors, and helps us fulfil our barrier-breaking mission by taking the word ‘kink’ into the mainstream.