More than just coffee

2017-08-01 06:01
Patrick Ne, manager of Jou Ma se Kombuis, says the shop is more than just a place to sit and drink coffee. PHOTO: Earl Haupt

Patrick Ne, manager of Jou Ma se Kombuis, says the shop is more than just a place to sit and drink coffee. PHOTO: Earl Haupt

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For Patrick Nel, running Jou Ma se Kombuis stretches beyond providing locals with a hot brew of Manenberg’s finest roast.

Nel, through Fusion Manenberg, hopes to effect change through Jou Ma se Kombuis by providing a safe and free space for those who seek redemption and reconciliation.

“We walk alongside broken young people who want to break free from a life of destruction, drugs and gangsterism. Within the organisation we have different projects that seek to address different aspects of a person being healed as a whole,” says Nel.

Jou Ma se Kombuis is the only coffee shop in Manenberg that offers freshly ground coffee, hot breakfast, lunch and a variety of freshly-baked cakes and muffins. They will be having an event on Saturday to relaunch the shop, where special events will see a fundraising element attached to them. They have been conducting a pop-up service in the heart of Manenberg in the lead up to the event.

“As the day will be filled with activity, a variety of locals will showcase their talents. We will also have a gatsby-eating competition and also would love to invite local crafters who will have the opportunity to display and sell their goods. We are inviting all people, especially from Manenberg, to come and enjoy this day with us,” says Nel.

Apart from the launch, Nel says Jou Ma se Kombuis is a space for residents to come and relax. But more importantly, supporting the business will influence the development of the youth and change the negative image Manenberg currently has.

Shihaam Heynes is one of the young people in Manenberg who have changed her life through Jou Ma se Kombuis after graduating from Tree of Life in 2011. Heynes is now the kitchen supervisor and bakes cakes and does catering, including weddings.

"I was on tik and mandrax, but now I have been clean for five years. Three years ago I went on a baking course before Jou Ma se Kombuis existed and the baking has changed me entirely,” Heynes says. She is looking forward to having Manenberg residents visit Jou Ma se Kombuis more often.

“There isn’t a coffee culture in Manenberg, so our dreams and our hopes are for people to come into this place and get into the rhythm of having a coffee, sitting like family and having a nice time without being in a place where they drink alcohol and stuff like that. We are trying to create a coffee culture where people can take that R20 which they use for drugs; they can buy a good coffee. We are trying to get those habits into them,” adds Heynes. 

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