On the concourse at Rosanna Station in Melbourne's leafy east exists a brand new social enterprise - The Little Social.

Not only are serving up the finest espresso to the good people near and far, but we are also providing life changing opportunities for young people experiencing disadvantage, homelessness and barriers to meaningful employment.

Social enterprises are not charities, they are good-for-profit businesses that harness community goodwill towards social and economic sustainability and ethical business by investing profits to innovate and grow within a social justice framework.

The Little Social is exactly that - giving young people from Banyule and surrounds the opportunity to participate in meaningful training and up-skilling to be well prepared to launch into a (very) competitive job market.

Youth Projects teamed up with Banyule Council to help bring the cafe to life in their local community. Banyule is supporting our latest venture with the café fit-out and rent subsidies whilst we (Youth Projects) continues doing what we do best - providing training and employment opportunities for young people. 

Image: three of The Little Social team members standing, smiling, in front of The Little Social entrance with sign in background that says 'Creating social change with every purchase'.

Our new partnership forms part of Banyule Council’s long-term strategy of supporting social enterprises as a way of creating workforce participation for some of the most vulnerable members of the community.

We are so pleased at how The Little Social is coming together,” Banyule Mayor Cr Rick Garotti said.

This kiosk is another social enterprise that Council supports, like Possum Hollow in the Warringal Parklands,” he said. “We see ventures like this as part of Council’s role working with the business community to help social enterprises grow and develop.

We encourage people to support them and get on board,” Cr Garotti added. “Not only do you get good coffee and food at The Little Social, you’re helping to get young lives back on track and create much needed local jobs.

Our CEO, Ben Vasiliou, saw this new cafe at Rosanna Station an opportunity too good to pass by.

A social enterprise venture such as this gives young people a significant boost in confidence and in self- esteem,” Mr Vasiliou said.

We are so pleased with the support from Banyule Council,” he said.

Apart from vital financial support in the first years, the attitude to social enterprise, from councillors and from staff, is so encouraging and important in our partnership.

Customers also have the opportunity to sprinkle some kindness into their day by anonymously purchasing a drink or snack for someone experiencing homelessness or accessing Youth Projects' homelessness services through our pay-it-forward initiatives at The Little Social. This is an important element of our holistic, warp around connection to our community health services.

The Little Social is open Monday to Friday and is located at 75 Turnham Avenue (on the Rosanna Station concourse) - drop by with friends, grab a coffee and know that every purchase you make is creating real social change.

For more information check out The Little Social on Facebook or Instagram