A little reminder that we aren’t just a café, that we exist as a place to promote grassroots art and positive social change and we’re always going to speak up on important issues, justice, oppression, the rise of the far right, climate change, racism, homophobia, ableism, transphobia and quite a lot else.

We are not party political (our crew members support a number of political parties and some support none of them), but we are not apolitical, because we believe that to be ‘neutral’ in the current climate is a political statement in itself.

To be silent is to say we agree things should stay as they are. We don’t.

We don’t think the current system is the best option for human health, happiness and security.

We don’t think the current system maximises human potential.

We don’t think the current system is viable for our planet’s overall health or for our own health, mental and physical.

We recognise that the current system unfairly privileges some and deliberately oppresses, harms and marginalises others. We believe this reality to be harmful to all members of society, but in particular to those most pushed to the edges.

We don’t think the current system is just or fair to non-human animals or to ecosystems.

We want things to change.

We exist to use art and coming together as a community around creativity and food to facilitate that change.

We’re not just about complaining about the current state of things but about modelling and exploring new ways of being.

We stand at an important crossroads in history and even a little place like ours has a part to play. Even a little place like ours has a duty to use our platform to share information, to encourage and support, to call out wrongdoing.

Even in the middle of this pandemic, we continue to push ourselves to operate in a more just, open and radical way. Even when it is hard (it is) and even when we get flack for doing so (we do).

Look folks. There are places you can just go and enjoy a coffee and not engage with larger social and environmental matters. We are not such a place. We’ve never been such a place.

We hope to be able to gather in person again soon, but for now we’re using our voice on social media to continue our mission, we’re bringing people together in online events and we’re bringing food to people in our community each week in the most accessible way we can manage.

If you want to be a part of us lighting up our little corner of the world, you can support us in a number of ways to help ensure we reopen at the end of lockdown:


Thanks for reading!

Gaffa the Goat (he’s not a real stuffed goat don’t worry) says hi and he misses you all

About janifranck

Artist, activist, founding director of The Art House in Southampton.
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