Vollpension: in this bakery, grandmas are the stars!

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Vollpension: in this bakery, grandmas are the stars!

Text by: Natalie Haas

Category: Social Innovation

Photos by: Julia Geiter

A brief thought experiment: How many times have you been involved in a really nice conversation over the past few months with a person who could have been your grandmother / grandfather or grand-dad? Rarely, if not at all, right? Grandma home alone suffering from loneliness and isolation and falling out of social networks plus often suffering from poverty? That can not be real, the "Vollpension" team thinks!
For some it's the wonderfully old-fashioned flowered cups. For others the framed embroidery on the wall. For many, the first bite in the cake at least should be the trigger for an impression that is quite wanted in "Vollpension", a very special café, in Vienna: Here, everything reminds of back then, at the grandmothers place.
Because the best cake was and is - hardly anyone will disagree - always from grandma. With this idea - to create a place where visitors feel safe, drink coffee, eat cake as with grandma, ideally with the senior women working here, in conversation - the idea for "Vollpension" was born by three young Austrians.
To say that the concept of this generational café, in which older women bake fresh and delicious cakes, has succeeded, would be almost understated: The retro charm decorated "Vollpension" is next to cake enthusiastic Viennese also frequently visited by tourists.
The interest of senior women to engage with and work for "Vollpension", who want to earn something in the pension (or in many cases have to) or want to escape a bit of loneliness, is huge, says Hannah Lux, who runs the company together with Julia Krenmayr and Moriz Piffl- Percevic.
The idea behind "Vollpension" is way more than to offer delicious homemade cakes from granny's secret recipes. This social entrepreneurship promotes inter-generational dialogue, fosters inclusion of old people living in the urban space and gives their employees a chance to earn additional income instead of letting them fall into ageing poverty.