Loaves and Fishes Café was established at the beginning of 2001, shortly after the Church Centre was opened. We occupy the conservatory at the front of the church centre and this commands spectacular views over the village with Bennachie as the backdrop. There is no better way of experiencing God’s creation as it changes on a daily basis, with the seasons and weather. We serve morning coffees and afternoon teas accompanied by tasty bakes, freshly made pancakes and scones. Our lunches offer a range of sandwiches, toasties and paninis or a bowl of soup with oatcakes. Our specials board displays the featured cakes, tray bakes, soups and sandwich fillings for the week, they can also be found advertised on our Facebook page.
We are happy to cater for slightly larger groups (10+) by prior arrangement so that we can ensure that we have seating and food available. We have catered for walking groups, WI outings, bus runs and nursing home trips in the past.
Loaves and Fishes is open to the public Tuesday to Thursday 10am – 4pm and on a Friday from 10am – 3pm.
We can cater for larger groups outwith these times by prior arrangement.
Supporting the Community
Loaves and Fishes aims to be a light within the local community and throughout the world. Early in 2016, Kemnay was hit by floods and we were able to open up the building overnight to provide food and shelter to 14 people who had left their homes due to water entering their houses. During the weeks that followed we were a centre for Samaritan’s Purse a charitable organisation who were able to send experienced volunteers to help with the massive clean up project not only in Kemnay but also in Inverurie and Port Elphinstone, which had also been badly hit. We stored cleaning materials and provided lunches for the residents as they cleared their homes and coordinated staff who could provide a listening ear or a helping hand where necessary. We were also the collection point for money raised within the local community for the victims of the flood. to date we have forwarded over £1500 to Inverurie Round Table who are distributing funds to the local area, where the need is greatest.
We currently support a boy (Vignesh) in Chennai, India to live in a hostel, allowing him to complete his education within the local Tamal school. We were delighted to receive a lovely letter from him recently, telling us about himself. The letter is available to read in the magazine rack in the café.
Vignesh with his father and with his friends.
In the years when we make a profit, we are able to offer the opportunity for individuals or groups to apply for funding to help support service at home or abroad. In previous years we have been able to buy a wheelchair for Inverurie hospital, help fund school pupils to travel to various parts of the world to help with community projects, donated money to Gospel for Grampian and many other projects. We advertise in the local and Kirk newsletters in November and December to invite applications for that year.
In order to be able to continue this work, we rely on the support of the community to come and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere, the tasty baking and the magnificent views. We also have a donations box within the café to help further support the work of Loaves and Fishes.
The coffee shop is run by volunteers who give of their time, anything from 1 hour to a whole day. They do a large variety of jobs, including serving customers, baking, preparing soups, making sandwiches and toasties, cleaning, clearing tables, loading the dishwasher and various other jobs from Tuesday to Friday.
It is a great privilege to be able to provide supported work placements for individuals within the local community who require a little bit extra help. Over the years we have had youngsters from local secondary schools who have a wide range of needs, from overcoming confidence issues to more profound learning disabilities. We also have volunteer staff introduced to us by Aberdeenshire council. We take a lot of pleasure in the diversity of our staff and learn as much from them as they, hopefully, learn from us.
In the school holidays we also employ a number of young people in all aspects of the café. We try to teach them the skills they will require when they enter employment in the future – including answering their own correspondence, dressing appropriately for a work environment and being reliable.
The staff range from 15 to nearly 90. We work together as a team and enjoy each other’s company at our biannual staff suppers.
We would love you to join us and always require staff who will prepare vegetables for soups, bake, shop for supplies and clean, as well as work in the café or kitchen, either on a permanent shift or as relief. If you have any spare time, and wish to be involved with the team please contact Fiona or the office at the Church Centre.
Loaves and Fishes Staff Click-Here