Paying it forward one meal at a time

Brett Street CAFE providing support to the community

Friday 15 May, 2020

The popularity of the new 'meals to go' service at Brett Street CAFE (Community Access For Everyone) has exceeded expectations and more than 600 meals have been sold since the new service began in April. 

Council's Coordinator Community Services Joanne Watters said there has been a really high demand and the team have now increased production. Subsidised meals are available to eligible persons under the My Aged Care Meal Services and National Disability Insurance Scheme and regular customers can also purchase the meals at an affordable price for themselves, their family or for elderly friends and neighbours. 

"The community has been very grateful for this new meal service and we didn't anticipate how popular it would be," Ms Watters said. 

"We knew there was a need for meals at an affordable price and we are so glad we can support people in the Tweed. We've received great feedback so far and we will certainly keep this type of service up long after the pandemic is over.

"Many people have been purchasing meals for friends, family and neighbours during these trying times - it's been great to see the community looking out for each other," she said.

Mayor of Tweed Katie Milne said Council's new cafe in the Tweed Heads Civic and Cultural Centre plaza has really stepped up to help the community in this time of need. 

"The affordable meals have been extremely popular and the 'pay it forward' initiative is a lovely way to further support those in need. As part of our 'Together Tweed' campaign we are encouraging the community to consider making a 'pay it forward' donation to cover the cost of a drink or meal for someone who really needs it," Cr Milne said. 

"There are even more people doing it tough right now who may have lost their jobs or businesses due to the coronavirus pandemic. The 'pay it forward' initiative is a way to pass on the love and goodwill of the community to people who may be experiencing financial hardship. 

"This is a way for the community to show we care about those in need.  Small gestures such as this can be important to let those who are struggling feel the love and support of the community.

"The cafe's mantra is about being good for people and good for the community. The meals are delicious and the coffee is fabulous.  We have been getting wonderful feedback and the recipients have been very grateful.

"Paying it forward is a small gesture but if it can brighten someone's day, or give them hope knowing that people care about them, that can make a real difference to people's lives," she said.

From next week, the cafe will allow up to 10 people to sit and have a coffee, light meal or snack as per updated guidelines from the NSW Government. The cafe will also continue to do takeaway during the modified opening hours of 8am to 1pm Monday to Thursday.  Pre-ordered 'meals to go' can be collected Tuesday to Friday 11am to 1pm.

The social enterprise cafe is located in the newly-upgraded Tweed Heads Civic and Cultural Centre plaza complex.
To view the 'meals to go' menu, how to order and options for pick-up, visit

To find out about Council's services and support in response to COVID-19 and to connect the Tweed community to Government information about the pandemic visit