Cin Cin customers show their sweet side for homelessness charity

David Toscano (centre) supporting The Clock Tower Sanctuary
David Toscano (centre) supporting The Clock Tower Sanctuary

Donations from customers at Italian restaurant Cin Cin have raised more than £1,600 for young homeless people in the city.

Cin Cin, which has two restaurants in Brighton and Hove, has donated £1 from the cost of its Affogato, a coffee, ice-cream dessert, to local youth homelessness charity The Clock Tower Sanctuary.

The Affogato dessert

The Affogato dessert

Since opening his first restaurant in North Laine in 2016, David Toscano, founder of Cin Cin, wanted to play an active role in the Brighton community.

He said: “I have always seen the role of our business to be beyond the four walls of our restaurant. We employ local people, pay The Living Wage, give work experience to college students interested in hospitality and have hosted charity dinners with other Brighton restaurants.

"But I what I really want to do is help tackle homelessness in Brighton. It is such a visible issue in our city and when a number of people recommended The Clock Tower Sanctuary to me, it felt like the right partnership to help make a difference.”

Alison Boyce, fundraising officer at The Clock Tower Sanctuary, said: “Gosh those £1 donations certainly add up - that is one top dessert!

"The £1,600 has made a huge difference and has gone towards the costs of keeping our centre and kitchen open six days a week.

"Volunteers are our lifeblood and the £1,600 enables us to train eight volunteers to provide one to one support to enable young people get their lives back on track. This includes DBS checks, induction, monthly training and supervision.

"Last year, our volunteers provided 8,500 hours of support and 14 volunteers moved into their first paid role in the homeless, mental health, addiction and counselling sector via their experience at the Clock Tower Sanctuary. Without contributions like this from Cin Cin, we would not have that growth in services and support.”

Mr Toscano said: "This is just the start for us and we plan to do more.

“The Clock Tower runs cooking classes for young homeless people to learn how to cook, a skill I was lucky enough to grow up with. We want our young chefs to help run these classes.

"The charity also needs more kitchen equipment - cooking utensils, stainless steel benches, a pasta machine, roasting pans and much more. We can help with some of these but I’m reaching out to other Brighton restaurants to see if they can donate spare kit too. Any support, however big or small, can make a real difference.”