TODAY marks five years since Social Bite, a chain of sandwich shops aimed at tackling homelessness, first opened its doors.
And as a token of thanks, anyone who visits a Social Bite shop today and quotes “Happy Birthday Social Bite” at the till will receive a 20% discount off all purchases.
The first Social Bite shop opened on Rose Street, Edinburgh, in 2012. From these humble beginnings, the Social Bite chain has grown considerably and now operates five shops across Scotland, with two cafes in both Edinburgh and Glasgow and one in Aberdeen.
Since opening, the social business has donated tens of thousands of pounds to charity, has employed over 90 staff including 25 formerly homeless people, the team has driven across Europe to deliver aid to refugees, and opened its doors to feed the homeless on Christmas Day. Social Bite has also made headlines in recent years after being visited by Hollywood A-listers, with both George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio dropping in to meet staff.
Last year, Social Bite partnered with Maison Bleue to open Home, Scotland’s first restaurant to help the homeless. Running on a not-for-profit basis with all profits going to charity, Home also runs a training and employment programme for members of the Social Bite Academy.
The Social Bite Village is the next project in the pipeline, aimed at tackling the cycle of homelessness. Work is currently underway and the village is expected to welcome residents before Christmas 2017, providing them with a home and the necessary skills and support to integrate back into society. Based in Granton, Edinburgh, the Social Bite Village will consist of 10 purpose-built two bedroom homes and provide a safe living environment for up to 20 people.
Alice Thompson, Social Bite co-founder and area manager said: “I can’t believe it has been five years since we opened our first Social Bite shop. We’ve come such a long way since 2012 but our mission remains the same; providing help to those in a desperate situation who need it most. I’d like to extend a huge thank you to all of the Social Bite staff, our charity partners, supporters and customers. Here’s to the next five years.”