Lily’s Bistro is an eatery with a social conscience. Their strapline, ‘Bringing People Together’, not only applies to their menu where the star dish is a Ploughman’s Platter which can be adapted for gluten free, vegetarian and vegan diets. But by using locally and ethically sourced, seasonal produce local suppliers are supported, and farmers and producers across the world are ensured fair and safe work and pay.
Canterbury resident and mother of two boys, Helena Jennings, says "I'm vegan but my boys love to eat meat so our family often struggles to find a place that caters for us all, but Lily’s Bistro is one of those rare places that will do just this."
The idea of bringing people together doesn't stop there; one of the main aims of Lily’s Bistro is to reflect the local community, offering opportunities to people with disabilities or who face other social disadvantage. Zoe and Kiera, Lily's Bistro managers, have joined forces with a variety of local organisations. Lily's Bistro is also working with Community Interest Company, Skillnet Group, through its Supported Internships programme. Stephanie Hunt joined the Internship programme in September 2016 and, after a successful interview, is looking forward to beginning her work placement at the Bistro when it opens.
Stephanie says "I feel lucky that I have this opportunity to have extra support and help whilst learning new things at Lily's Bistro"
Zoe says -“I come from a social care background (working with people with learning disabilities) and was always disappointed in the lack of opportunities for them to get paid employment and function fully in society. Because of this, I approached Skillnet Group and they had the perfect young person in mind for us. Within a few weeks we met with her and she will now be joining us on a Supported Internship programme. We can’t wait to work with her and look forward to seeing her achieve her full potential”.