The Cellar is a café in the centre of Godalming which is open to everyone, with the principle objective of providing a caring and friendly meeting place for disadvantaged and vulnerable people in the community. Everyone is welcome without discrimination or judgement, and the cost of food and drink is kept at an affordable level.
For those who may have mental health problems or learning difficulties, or who are socially isolated, depressed or emotionally stressed, the Cellar is a safe haven. By being welcomed and treated with care and concern, people find a sense of belonging to an extended family, where joys and sorrows are shared. The Cellar has always provided a listening ear and a prayerful support to all. It has been found that over time, through acceptance and increased self-esteem, those who have led broken lives can become more purposeful and better integrated into the community.
To meet these needs staff are employed who are trained in listening, and if necessary they can give advice and practical help. The Cellar is part of a local community support network and people are often referred by local GP practices, Social Services and churches. The Cellar also has close contact with groups such as Rethink (Surrey Mental Health Centre), the Meath Epilepsy Trust, and the CAB.
In the Summer, day trips to the coast are organised for individuals and families who cannot afford a holiday. At Christmas parcels of seasonal food and gifts are distributed locally. A free simple meal is always available for those in real need, and emergency supplies of basic food.
Every Tuesday morning at 9am, staff, volunteers and friends gather to review and pray over matters of concern.
The controlling body of The Cellar are the trustees of the Warehouse Christian Trust, a local charity established in 1979. The café is supported by volunteers as fundraisers and staff. Grants and donations received are used to maintain the standard of provision for the needy, and major running costs include staff salaries, utilities and subsidised food and drink. The present economic climate has continued to increase the number of people requiring this type of charitable local care and service. At a time of financial uncertainty and ever increasing running costs, The Cellar Team is focussed on sustaining existing levels of support to the vulnerable people in our community and reaching out to new ‘customers’ who may need support. In an affluent locality those who are socially marginalised can otherwise be ignored.