In 2013, Geoff Harris, a key STREAT supporter, purchased a $2.5m property, Cromwell Manor, in Collingwood and gifted its use to STREAT for 50 years. Our collective dream was for it to be developed into a flagship site where STREAT could train and support 365 young people each year. The site would contain:

  • A large training academy where young people receive full life-skills support and also train to become baristas, chefs and bakers
  • A high-end café, catering company, artisan bakery and coffee roastery
  • Spaces for private meetings, functions & community activities on weekends including bike repairs, community stalls or markets
  • STREAT's head office

Cromwell St. is now open!

The building was finished in June 2016 and we moved into the site in July - the cafe opened to the public on the 14th of September.

Here's a snapshot of the project.

  • May 2013 - site purchased by Geoff Harris
  • May 2015 - funding and building agreements in place
  • June 2015 - break ground
  • August 2015 - major demolition of existing buildings, holes being drilled, plumbing and services being prepared for concreting
  • September 2015 - historical manor being repaired, slab poured, walls went up, metal frame being put in place, roof being lifted on.

Pioneering work in impact investment

To develop the site, STREAT needed to secure over $3.5m of funding through a combination of philanthropic grants and repayable finance. It had strong success securing funds from a range of sources (Breadsolutions funded the bakery, and a number of key philanthropic foundations provided grant funding (Ian Potter Foundation, TK Foundation, Helen Macpherson Smith Trust, Fidelity Foundation, Jack & Ethel Goldin Foundation, Greenlight Foundation/Sornem  Private Wealth). 

STREAT won a 2015 Australian Social Enterprise Award for this pioneering deal. If you'd like to understand all the details of the how this deal got done, please download the PDF icon streat_impact_investment_case_study_final2015.pdf

Major donor & project partner

  • Geoff Harris - Retail entrepreneur and philanthropist Geoff Harris took an interest in how a social enterprise model could create outcomes for young people whilst running financially sustainable businesses. Geoff purchased the $2.5m property for STREAT to develop and utilise for 50 years.
  • Breadsolutions - One of Australia’s largest B2B bakeries, they originally approached STREAT to explore a bakery partnership. Breadsolutions have fully funded the bakery, along with providing the Head Baker when the site opens.

Major philanthropic supporters 

  • Ian Potter Foundation
  • The TK Foundation
  • Greenlight Foundation / Sornem Private Wealth
  • Westpac Foundation
  • Fidelity Foundation (UK)
  • Helen Macpherson Smith Trust
  • Jack & Ethel Goldin Foundation
  • Gandel Philanthropy

Impact investors

  • NAB - NAB, a main financial institution, was keen to work with STREAT to create a financial solution that delivered on both STREAT and NAB’s individual and aligned outcomes, such as proposing the Phase 2 structure to provide a new investment opportunity that will help build sector capacity in Australia.
  • Social Ventures Australia - SVA is a pioneer of impact investing in Australia and has a strong existing relationship with STREAT through the SVA venture portfolio.

Project design & construction supporters

  • Six Degrees architects
  • McCorkell Constructions
  • Brookfield Multiplex
  • Hansen Partnership
  • Slattery

Deal advisors & pro bono supporters

  • Paul Steele, CEO, Donkey Wheel Foundation - The Donkey Wheel Foundation provided Paul Steele’s time pro bono to act as deal intermediary. Paul worked with the STREAT team to help the organisation prepare itself for impact investment (as he did in 2012).
  • Crowe Horwath - The accountancy firm who provided an independent review of STREAT’s business plan.
  • DLA Piper - The law firm who undertook the legal work (pro bono) and reviewed all major documentation.