On a sunny but bone chilling January afternoon I found my way to the Raw Sugar Cafe on Somerset just West of Bronson. This corner cafe with all of it’s windows is a warm and welcoming spot in the heart of Chinatown. I found a bright spot to curl up with my notebook and a lovely chai latte (made by an infamous Ottawan).
Surrounded by eclectic second hand furnishings and great artwork I watched as the place maintained a continuous flow of people. Some on computers, others with their bags of yarn creating something warm and fuzzy; tea, coffee, & sweets close at hand.
Owner Nadia Kharyati was as busy as you would expect an entrepreneur to be, cleaning up and organizing the back of the cafe to prepare for one of their free workshops. I was there with about 12 other individuals to attend the “starting your own small business” workshop. Nadia and Christina (of the Workshop Boutique on Dalhousie) provided tips, info, and encouragement to those of us interested in the world of self-employment. Both women were very willing to answer our questions and give us as much help as possible and our not-so-little group lapped up all the information they could spill.
Support the locals!