Change Please expands from the streets to the stores


Change Please coffee available at Sainsbury's

Change Please, a social enterprise on the CAN³ programme, is now selling its coffee at 375 Sainsbury’s stores nationwide.

Change Please train people previously experiencing homelessness to become baristas and sell its coffee from carts and fixed locations throughout London. The social enterprise also provide support with housing, bank accounts and future employment. Supported by CAN³, Big Issue and Big Issue Invest, Change Please has experienced considerable growth since its creation in 2015.

The baristas themselves and their stories feature on the packaging of the three premium blends; available for £4.50 per bag. All profits are then put back into the social enterprise to help more homeless people.

Coffee bags

Cemal Ezel, the founder of Change Please, said: “This is a huge step forward to helping the current state of homelessness in the country. We have built this social enterprise on being a ‘pick me up, not a hand out’ for the people involved and it is their hard work that has got their lives moving in the right direction.


“Change Please aims to create a real win-win situation; knowing that we’re continuing to feed the consumer demand for high quality coffee, but on a much wider scale now through the consumer product, we can make an even bigger impact on this country’s homelessness problem.”

When trading began in 2015, Change Please had one coffee cart at Covent Garden. In under two years, the organisation has expanded its carts to London Bridge, Kraft-Heinz, Time-Inc, Canary Wharf, Borough Market, Here East and Christ Church Southwark.

The social enterprise now has coffee bars operated by its baristas within Time Inc and Kraft-Heinz at The Shard and four new locations are planned to launch in the next few months.

Change Please

CAN³ logoThe growing impact of Change Please has been supported by CAN Invest through their participation in the CAN³ accelerator programme in CAN Mezzanine, Borough.

The CAN³ programme aims to scale the growth and impact of ‘post start-up’ charities and social enterprises. It combines free business expertise from the CAN Invest team, surgery sessions from CAN’s SMT, and peer to peer sessions with other organisations, all within the dedicated office space of CAN Mezzanine.

During their first year on the programme, Change Please received tailored advisory services to develop an impact-led growth strategy, including a Theory of Change to articulate their impact (see image below), and development of a bespoke impact management framework. The impact framework is fundamental to Change Please as it scales, as it enables the organisation to systematically report on the impact of their work to funders, partners and customers and use impact data to improve the quality of their services for baristas.

Theory of Change

The social enterprise also benefitted from a loan of £28,000 from the CAN Early Intervention Fund, in partnership with UBS, to support the set-up of their first shopfront location and the salary of an Events Sales Manager.


Change Please was recently listed in Marketing Week’s 100 Disruptive Brands 2017 for young brands that could be ‘disrupting your world’ and are ‘imaginative in adapting to societal shifts and employ structures and models that break convention.’

Marketing Week state that ‘Change Please’s model of reducing homelessness by focusing on getting people a job and securing housing is disrupting how we think about the issue of homelessness.’

Find out more about how the CAN³ programme could work for your organisation

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Category: Mezzanine