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Te Tuhi Café


Te Tuhi Café. Photo by Amy Weng


Te Tuhi Café

Te Tuhi Café



Training café at Te Tuhi

Te Tuhi’s café is Aotearoa’s first training café for people with intellectual disabilities, run in partnership with Rescare Homes Trust and The University of Auckland.

The café provides in-house training and paid employment for people with intellectual disabilities, through a community-based programme.

The café launches on 20 July 2020 and will be open Monday to Saturday 9am − 2pm. It will serve barista-made coffee and a range of freshly baked cabinet food. Te Tuhi is fully accessible, with step-free entrances, accessible parking and bathroom facilities, making it an excellent choice for those with specific access requirements.

Rescare Homes Trust provides supported residential accommodation and vocational support for people with intellectual disabilities, to enable more independent living. Tracey Lanigan, CEO of Rescare, says, “The training café is an excellent stepping stone to learn new skills in a supportive environment, and we are excited to be partnering with Te Tuhi and The University of Auckland in creating equal learning, training and employment opportunities for people with disabilities.” Each participant will have a personal training plan designed by The University of Auckland, with their goals and targets, which will be used to track their progress and development. 

Training cafés for people with intellectual disabilities are common in the United Kingdom, where Te Tuhi’s Executive Director Hiraani Himona became familiar with the model. On her arrival at Te Tuhi she identified gallery’s café as an ideal context to implement this, and discovered Rescare, who were looking for new opportunities for their service users. Himona has brought in consultancy from the Bede Centre, who run a training café for people with intellectual disabilities in London, and with whom she worked while at the South London Gallery. 

The café project is a non-profit enterprise. We are currently seeking support to cover wages of trainers, trainees and other café staff. We welcome donations to support this initiative.