An Ipswich café which tries to help those with anxiety or depression to get to the next phase of their lives has told of the impact of its barista training scheme.

Fresh Start Coffee, in Carr Street, was set up in 2022 to help younger people and create a community with their customers. 

Set up by head Angela Gregg, the venue has a second-hand furniture store in the front and a café at the back, and it helps give people barista and retail traineeships for "promoting a positive change".

The cafe was set up in 2022 to promote a positive changeThe café was set up in 2022 to promote a positive change (Image: Archant (Matthew Earth))

Café manager Tina Sinderby said: "You never know what kind of a day people are having, maybe someone in front of you in a line has tried to step out of their house for weeks but couldn't because of their anxiety. 

"It would help them so much if you were just kind to them. And that is what we are trying to promote here with our cafe."

Mrs Sinderby runs a traineeship from the cafe, where students could come for three months, the first two months of which are volunteering and in the final month they would begin to get paid. 

"We want to teach them everything about coffee so that they can go and find a job outside for longer," she added. 

They currently take people not in education, employment or training to help them take the next step in their journey

Tina Sinderby (left) and Savannah Matthews (right) currently run the traineeship togetherTina Sinderby (left) and Savannah Matthews (right) currently run the traineeship together (Image: Shikhar Talwar)

One of their first students of this scheme was Savannah Matthews, who admitted that she was anxious and unable to step in front of the cafe as a barista when she joined. 

"But it helped me, the atmosphere and teamwork helped me feel good about myself," she added. 

Through the traineeship, she said she believes that she was able to grow her confidence and become the senior sales assistant at the café along with carrying out the traineeship herself. 

The pair added that they want to grow what they are fighting for, and want mental health in Suffolk to be taken seriously by schools and authorities. 

Their founder Mrs Gregg wants to do the same and is currently trying to pair up with schools to let children access their facilities.