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Project to encourage social interaction over a cup of coffee launches in Buckinghamshire

| October 8, 2017

Noel Brown, Buckinghamshire County Council Cabinet Member for Communities and Public Health.

A new project aimed at encouraging social interaction over a cup of coffee is to launch in Buckinghamshire.

Funded by the Buckinghamshire County Council Beeches Local Area Forum (LAF) Coffee Companions will launch on Monday 9th October 2017.

Coffee Companions is a small business aiming to encourage social interaction through ‘chat mats’ designed to encourage people to talk to one another at the participating cafes.

Each ‘chat mat’ has two sides. One side reads ‘Say Hello’ if you fancy a chat, the other says ‘Not Today’ if a chat isn’t your cup of tea that day.

A total of £150 has been allocated by Beeches LAF to launch the scheme in Burnham with initial purchase of the mats. Venues in Marlow, Aylesbury and Winslow are also launching the scheme.

The Coffee Companions companion hour launches will take place as follows :

  • Monday 9th October 2017 at 10.30am : Marlow – The Perch
  • Tuesday 10th October 2017 at 10.30am : Buckingham Park Community hall café
  • Wednesday 11th October 2017 at 10.30am : Winslow – The Rooneys
  • Thursday 12th October 2017 at 10.30am : Bedgrove (Aylesbury) – Coffee Bean
  • Friday 12th October 2017 at 10.30am : Burnham – Capelo’s (Burnham Park Hall)

As well as the mats Coffee Companions is also encouraging venues that buy into the scheme to run a Companion Hours, a dedicated regular slot when customers are encouraged to meet other Companions.

Eileen, a regular Companion Hour goer, said: ‘A coffee shared is so much more fun than a coffee alone.

Cabinet Member for Community Engagement and Public Health, Noel Brown, said: ‘We have been so impressed with the positive feedback about the Coffee Companion scheme across the country that we decided to launch it here.

Social isolation is something that affects people all over the county and the Chat Mats and Companion Hours are just one great way to help combat it.

Further information about the scheme can be found at https://www.coffeecompanions.co.uk/.

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