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What’s it like being a Chatty Table Volunteer and hosting a ‘Chatter & Natter’ table in your local café?

Posted on 3 November 2022

Interview held with Anita, a Chatty Table Volunteer and Dominie, Manager of GOAT Coffee Co., Farm Rd, Bracklesham Bay, Chichester PO20 8JU. Their Chatter & Natter table is hosted by Anita at the café, every Tuesday from 10am – 11am.

Anita, the Chatty Table Volunteer said; “When I saw the advert on Good Morning Britain on ITV about giving 60 minutes of your time to change lives to tackle loneliness I thought; “I want to do that”.

As a carer I know of so many lonely people. Not just people I care for but in general when I talk to people in the park or if I am out and about in my daily life.

So I signed up to become a Chatty Table Volunteer and signed up a local café called Goat Coffee Co, near to where I live in Bracklesham Bay West Sussex. 

We agreed a time and day to run the ‘Chatter & Natter’ table and the Manager advertises the sessions on a blackboard and on social media. 

If I chat to people in the park, I tell them about it and quite often see them the following week. If I see someone sitting alone in the café, I invite them to join us.

I welcome people to the Chatter & Natter table if anyone fancies joining simply to chat. It started off with around 4 people and has very quickly has grown to between 10-20 people a week. 

The comments I get from the customers in our group really makes me feel appreciated and some say without this group they don’t see anyone from one week to the next. It makes such a difference to people’s mental health and it really brings joy to me to see the friendships amongst the groups.

I have no regrets doing this every week. I really look forward to my Tuesday mornings and I’d recommend it to anyone.”

Dominie, the Manager at the café, GOAT Coffee Co. said; “Anita is an asset to the Goat Coffee Co. community. Anita brings sunshine week in and week out, to everyone’s faces by providing support and reassurance to all that attend the group. Thank you Anita, for everything you are doing.”