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The Chatty Cafe Scheme Australia Ltd

Chatty Cafe Australia Expansion

Chatty Cafe Australia Expansion

The Chatty Cafe Australian Expansion Project is focused on establishing funding for this rapidly growing organisation to address its sustainability in FY 202...

australia > NATIONWIDE > Metro and regional
02/10/2023 > 31/12/2024


  • Health/wellbeing and medical research
  • Social inclusion and justice


  • People experiencing socio-economic disadvantage or vulnerability
  • Seniors (65+)


The Chatty Cafe Australian Expansion Project is focused on establishing funding for this rapidly growing organisation to address its sustainability in FY 2024/25 while more on-going funding (corporate partnership , grants, and donations) is secured by the Board of Directors and the Managing Director (a volunteer) to drive its Australia-wide strategic direction and ensure a sustainable business model.

To support this 2022/23 significant growth in demand for our health promotion and harm reduction services, resources are required immediately for FYS 24/25 including recruiting a P/T National Operations Manager ($35K) , and a P/T National Volunteer Coordinator ($35K) to manage the operational arm of the organisation involving venues (engagement, support), volunteers (recruitment, management, training, support, acknowledgement) and customers (encouragement, support) management plus annual Operating expenses ($30K) to cover off on such items as insurance, social media, IT software costs, subscriptions etc. This funding will also support continuing to address administrative efficiencies with improved processes and procedures and improved governance.


The additional resources and operating funding is expected to result in:
- An increase in Chatty Venues, currently 190 and expected to grow in 24/25 to up to 350 venues across Australia signing up to the Scheme (currently one every three days) and the resulting support and engagement needed;
- An increase of Chatty volunteers from the current 77 active volunteers and 70 applicants to a total of 300 to 350 active/applicant volunteers to be recruited, managed, trained,, supported, acknowledged;
- An increase of Chatty Customers attending Chatty tables and events at Chatty venues, and as a result fulfil the mission of Chatty Cafe to promote improved mental health, reduce harm and support community welfare through enabling social connection and inclusion across Australia. At the moment Chatty venues report a range from 5 to 40 Chatty customers attending a weekly Chatty event primarily at Community-focused Centres, Neighbourhood Houses, Libraries, Op Shops and Retirement Villages and from one to 25 Chatty customers at commercial venues such as cafes and restaurants at weekly events.

Profile of The Chatty Cafe Scheme Australia Ltd

The Chatty Cafe Scheme Australia Ltd

Who we are: Chatty Cafe Australia is a Health Promotion DGR1 and Community Welfare approved ACNC charity focused on reducing social isolation and loneliness across the diverse Australian community - in metropolitan, regional and rural areas - simply but powerfully by getting people chatting and improving mental health!

Why we do what we do: Evidence shows 1 in 4 Australians from all demographics are lonely each week. Loneliness and social isolation is known to impact physical, mental and cognitive wellbeing. Recent events such as Covid-19 and rising cost of living issues have and are impacting mental health across Australian communities - our aim is to prevent further harm by promoting a range of opportunities for social inclusion and connection.

Where are we located: Begun in late 2019 in Bayside, Victoria and severely impacted by Covid-19 extended closures of social venues in 2020/21, the Scheme is growing rapidly since 2022. It has over 190 venues, primarily in Victoria, but expanding into Queensland, Western Australia, Tasmania and the ACT, with interest growing in South Australia.

How does it work? Social community venues ( e.g. neighbourhood houses, libraries, churches, community centres, activity centres, retirement villages, aged-care residences, schools, op shops) and commercial hospitality venues (e.g. cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars, and even an art gallery!) choose to sign up to establish "Have a Chat" tables during their operating hours, encouraging social inclusion opportunities for customers to chat to other customers for as long or as short at time as they want, encouraging social connection.

Who are Chatty Customers: Everyone is Welcome at a Chatty Table. Chatty Customers represent a cross-section of “Australian Community”, as diverse as the venues they choose to attend – men, women, young and old, all of diverse preferences, ethnicity, language, and abilities.

Roles for Volunteers: Venues can request a Chatty Table Volunteer be engaged to act as a facilitator/ice-breaker, as the venue introduces the concept to their local community. We also offer roles in administration, social media, event management and online virtual chats. Volunteer are required to make application, review relevant handbook documentation, sign a Volunteer agreement, provide a Working with Children Check/Blue Card and attend a one-hour induction session online or face-to-face.

What do we provide: Membership provides promotional material, support and information necessary to successfully set up the Chatty table in a venue, along with social media exposure and community and geographic profile.


TOTAL BUDGET: $100,000
Funding sourceAmount
Funding gap (unconfirmed)$85,000
Expense itemAmount
P/T Operations Manager$35,000
P/T Volunteer Manager$35,000
Operating Expenses$30,000

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Got a question about this project or ready to contribute? Contact us.


As a broker of change, we invite social change initiatives to apply for funding. Eligible proposals are shared with our giving community via our Granting Opportunities directory.