Coffee Bar Tuesday

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Participants during Coffee Bar Session on mental health. Photo: Julius Rasat

Coffee bar Tuesday is a space for young people and communities where they meet and discuss some of the community issues affecting them and getting solutions while sipping coffee. The discussions are usually held on every Tuesday. It’s not just a space for discussing issues but also a space for learning and unlearning. Through the space, communities have been able to change perspective and have points that would impact the whole community.

One of the online posters.

The discussion is usually attended by 15 to 30 people depending on the topic. Our discussions are not static; they don’t focus on only one field or sector. We have discussions on governance, pandemic, police brutality, climate change, mental health, youth opportunities, budget process, sexual health and reproductive health, sexual and gender based violence, business, politics, relationships, plastic pollution among others. We also try to focus our discussions on some of the emerging issues within the community or nationwide.

It is common for people to assume that they understand the problems they face. Unfortunately, the understanding is often based on their own perspectives only. Through the space, we are able to share our different opinions and come to a conclusion.

Members of the community are usually quick to offer solution suggestions based on a partial understanding of the situation. Others don’t even want to start thinking. In most cases, we use some simple questions that help refocus the attention and energy of the participants away from the problem and towards the solution.

In response to certain problems, there are several solutions and through these points, we are able to choose what suits our community. Our team’s ability to come up with more options increases our chances of finding something that is ideal or at least agreeable to everyone.

The space has played a key role in changing mindsets especially on governance. Through the discussions, we were able to see young people engaging with governance issues compared with a few years back. See you on Tuesday!


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