Nestled in the countryside of Harpenden with the Bluebell woods behind and the Nickey Line right beside, the Oval Cafe serves as a connecting point within the YWAM and larger Harpenden area community.
Why are we different ?
1. Most cafes employ minimum wage earners that do it for a job. We don’t. We have, from baristas to managers, volunteers that do this because we believe in the work, we like to have fun, enjoy working with each other and cultivating community through service.
2. We see the cafe as an opportunity to show God’s love in the way we serve, the time we give, and the excellence from which we do it all.
3. We care about our world, and we try to find products that line up with our ethos, are healthy and are good for the environment, and demonstrate a heart of stewardship.
4. The Oval Cafe offers things others cannot compete on: a wonderful oval to ride around and/or play on, free parking, meeting areas, bluebell woods, etc.
5. The cafe's profits are directed towards supporting the YWAM ministry's operational expenses, facilitating growth, and sponsoring individuals and teams for missions across various nations. By purchasing coffee from the cafe, you are contributing to charitable causes such as aiding refugees in Greece, supporting a food bank in Harpenden, providing relief in Turkey, supporting a charity in Luton, helping a home in Albania, and touching the lives of individuals in Peru.
We’re about impact in our neighborhoods and in the nations, and you’re a part of it.
Origins and Development:
- The Oval Cafe was initiated by YWAM Harpenden staff and leaders as a connecting space.
- In 2008, it became a reality after receiving furniture donations from Starbucks and M&S.
- YWAM Harpenden staff contributed money, time, and effort to transform a classroom into the cafe.
- Initially intended for YWAM staff, it gradually expanded to include the local community.
Evolution and Reputation:
- Over the years, the Oval Cafe grew from a classroom to a community space with coffee.
- It adapted during COVID-19, operating with window service as a connecting point.
- Today, it is an established cafe known for its excellent coffee, friendly service, and welcoming atmosphere.
- It has become a prominent part of the Harpenden community.
Mission and Training:
- The YWAM Harpenden base aims to equip and train young people for global missions.
- The cafe not only serves the community but also provides training in hospitality, excellence, and discipleship.
- It seeks to integrate business and mission, preparing volunteers for future endeavors.