The Breakfast Bothy was conceived during lockdown of 2020 by the team at Carlowrie Castle Ltd - an events venue outside the city of Edinburgh. The object was always to start simply. Provide a hot meal and drink to those who are unable to provide for themselves at the start of the day for whatever reason.
By having a fixed location and regular hours we have built a small community who come for breakfast and stay for a chat so we extended our hours to lunch. These guests provide feedback on services that they may be missing and these are passed back to the trustees to approach our network and action. Awareness of the bothy is through printed media to hand out to potential guests, backed up by a web presence. We have networked with local churches and aid suppliers already, and most importantly word of mouth and referral from guests themselves are seeing increased use of the bothy. Ultimately we hope to grow a safe and welcoming community where people in need of a service can be assured of a friendly ear and reliable help from a network of individuals and businesses.
Our model is to grow organically, and already the next step up from the food and drinks service has been discussed with our guests and actioned. It was established that there were several areas that proved challenging, from simple fixes such as providing hand crank phone chargers with built in torches to medical or legal advice - for which we have made inroads to partners. Basic services such as laundry and showering, bicycle repair, haircuts and pet services have all began in the area through a token system, where we have agreed with local businesses to provide a service in exchange for a bothy token, which the business can then redeem for the value of the service. This is a simple, risk-free solution ensuring that money spent goes towards the intended purpose. You can make a difference to our community by volunteering time, expertise or funding which will enable us to go further faster according to the needs of our guests. We would love to expand our locations, become mobile, befriend more people and spread the love. (At the time of writing we are opening a bank account having just achieved charity status. Any donations will be through a justgiving page coming soon.)
Charity number SC051923. Registered in Scotland.