Did you know you can support a social cause or community while exploring the city? Whether you’re shopping, dining or just getting a coffee, try these easy ways to give a helping hand.

Higher Ground hotcakes for a good cause

Chances are you've had the iconic hotcakes from Higher Ground. For a limited time only, they've given this Insta-fave dish a bright pink makeover. The special edition stack features a blueberry and ricotta hotcake topped with fresh seasonal berries, maple syrup, double cream and a sprinkle of edible pink yum. And until 31 October, a portion of proceeds will be donated to Think Pink - a foundation that supports people diagnosed with breast cancer.

A pancake on a plate topped with pink whipped cream
Higher Ground

Miei social enterprise florist

Looking for gifts that give back? Then buy a floral arrangement, produce hamper or some other special something from Miei. This social enterprise donates all its profits to charity partner The Smith Family. The planet gets a hug too. Flowers can only be pre-ordered, ensuring every stem goes into a vase rather than into landfill. Whether you want a bouquet for mum or a gin-tasting set for your bestie, this is a one-stop shop.

Queen Victoria Women's Centre SHOP!

Explore local crafts at this curated marketplace for female and non-binary artists, designers and makers. From distinctive ceramics to quirky jewellery, the Queen Victoria Women's Centre SHOP! is full of unique treasures. Everything is sold on consignment, so the creators receive a higher percentage of the sale price than a traditional retail store. All proceeds after this go straight back into the women's centre!

The inside of a small Melbourne shop with pink neon sign that reads building our empire.
QVWC Shop!

home.two

What’s not to like about this Melbourne University cafe? For starters, home.two is one of the social enterprises operated by For Change Co., which supports homeless youth. It also cares for the planet. The grab-and-go menu is 100 per cent vegan. Their food scraps and coffee grounds are composted. Packaging is plant-based and biodegradable. Plus, there’s a discount when you BYO cup or food container.

Good Cycles

Get everything for your next ride here, from parts to accessories and clothes, or even a new bike. Good Cycles covers all the bike bases – including servicing – while helping disadvantaged youth. This social enterprise employs young people, and 100 per cent of their profits support local community programs. Feel good about every dollar you spend – and not just because you’ll be well prepared for that next ride.

A man on a bike riding past the river.
Get on your bike with Good Cycles

STREAT

Social enterprise cafe STREAT trains youth from disadvantaged backgrounds to give them a fresh start in life. So grab a coffee or lunch and know that your spend is doing good. Help the Earth too, by getting behind STREAT’s Tiny Habits campaign. They’re aiming to serve one in three takeaway coffees in reusable cups. Find them in Parkville, Bourke Street and Bowen Street.

House of Cards

Located at Melbourne University and Southbank’s Boyd Community Hub, House of Cards Espresso serves coffee that’s good in every way. Beans are selected according to sustainable social and environmental practices. It's a commitment that means your latte or long black can be traced back to the plantations. Each month, House of Cards also donates a portion of its profits shared between four environmental, cultural, health and social causes. With every order, you can help decide how it’s shared around.

More sustainable Melbourne spots

Parcs

A smallish, ferment and wine bar driven by a mission to minimise food waste.

KereKere Green

Cute little cafe with a community focus in the heritage-listed Fitzroy Gardens.

Melbourne's best sustainable fashion brands and designers

Browse iconic Melbourne stores and designs from local creatives.

The ultimate guide to sustainable dining in Melbourne

Find zero-waste wines, fermented food waste and homegrown produce at these eco-friendly businesses.

Last updated on Wed 12 Oct 2022

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