Small café, big energy: Powering a charity

Café No.5 is part of ValePlus, a charity that operates across Barry and Llantwit Major in south Wales. The charity offers education and employment opportunities to people with learning disabilities.

A woman serving coffee behind the counter of a cafe.

“We are a charity first and foremost, but we’re independent as well,” explains Steven Thomas.

The charity was established “in response to the need for an ongoing service for people who are leaving school and college with a learning disability,” explains Steven Thomas, owner of Café No.5.

 “We provide accredited courses – so we’re a learning charity – and our ultimate aim is to get people back into work.”

Steven calls the café “a kind of work experience environment” which provides a supportive environment for people to learn in while gaining confidence in their abilities.

While the job is challenging, Steven and his colleagues take great pride in the work that they do and the vital service they provide across the community.

A team of employees from Cafe No. 5 giving a thumbs-up outside the front of the shop

“There’s no such thing as a normal day! There are challenges all the time. You don’t know what’s going to happen from day-to-day,” explains Stephen.

“Our biggest achievement is seeing me of our clients actually moving on and progressing into full-time, paid employment.

“It’s rare. It’s difficult to actually get people into employment, especially with a learning disability. But we do succeed. And that is a highlight, and that’s something that we are very, very proud of.”

A close-up of a smiling employee of Cafe No. 5, wearing a blue apron on a sunny day

With a handful of different premises, Steven wanted a hassle-free energy supplier so that he and his staff could focus on running the charity.

“We’ve actually got most of our centres now with Opus Energy. We’ve found them to be efficient but small and easy to access. Whenever we’ve got any issues, they’re at the end of the phone.

“There’s no waiting time; there’s somebody there who’ll actually deal with your enquiry very, very quickly and very, very efficiently.”

Opus Energy is proud to power a charity that’s committed to making a positive impact in the local community.

If you’re interested in joining ValePlus and the more than 2,500 other charities that are powered by Opus Energy, click here to get an online quote for your energy.


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