Community cafés reopen with focus on health

Evolve grows to become city’s first wellbeing café.

Re-opening its doors for the first time since the COVID-19 lockdown, social enterprise café Evolve has returned to the city, bringing wellbeing in its wake. Looking to provide safe spaces for people in a post-pandemic new normal, Evolve’s two sites will become Birmingham’s first wellbeing cafés, focused on putting health first.

In light of COVID-19, the spotlight is on our health more than ever and with this, shocking statistics have emerged about both our physical and mental health: latest results show that the NHS estimates that one in every four adults in the UK has a BMI of over 30; while more than two-thirds of adults in the UKreported feeling somewhat or very worried about the effect the pandemic is having on their life.

Determined to provide accessible, affordable, and achievable solutions for the community, Evolve will be placing health and wellbeing at the heart of all it does. From funding each member of staff’s accredited nutrition and mental health first aid training; to subsiding fruit and veg snack-pots and selling only healthy, balanced meals: Evolve is committed to finding sustainable ways to help people live better.

Speaking about the new direction for the cafés, Taylor Barrett, Social Enterprise Lead at Evolve, commented: “Since launching, our aim has always been to be as ethical, sustainable and inclusive as possible. With the statistics around health becoming increasingly worrying, we felt that we needed to weigh in to help find a solution and turn intention into action quickly. Looking at how we could be a vehicle for change, we realised that transforming the spaces we had into wellbeing hubs was a perfect starting point.

“While the pandemic has certainly posed its challenges, it has also given us an opportunity to pause, reassess and revaluate what we at Evolve could do to provide greater value to our community. We strongly hope that this revised focus is a welcome change for our customers and empowers people to improve their physical and mental health.”

Always known as a coffee-shop with conscience, Evolve is no stranger to serving up positivity. Established in 2017 to provide young people facing barriers to employment with training, qualifications and job opportunities, Evolve has since gone on to help 28 young people, offering over 1,000 hours of one-to-one support.

From running initiatives to help its fellow social enterprises to network, connect, and collaborate; through to setting up one of the city’s most-loved spoken word events, The Ramblers Ball: Evolve feels that its move into being a dedicated wellbeing café is a natural next step on its journey.

“We hope that our wellbeing cafés can help those who are searching for a pick-me-up in these tough and trying times. We are working hard behind the scenes and looking forward to embarking on this new dawn. We can’t wait to see you all once doors are open, and welcoming you back to Evolve,” concluded Taylor.

To find out more about what is in store for Evolve’s Adam and Eve and Pebble Mill sites, visit: