I had heard this rumor mentioned last year, and it appears it is indeed going to happen. This little blurb is from the Thistle Farms website:
Thistle Stop Café is the next "stop" in the Magdalene and Thistle Farms enterprise. Like Thistle Farms, Thistle Stop Café will give survivors of trafficking, prostitution, and addiction an opportunity to learn valuable job skills to help them move towards financial independence. Thistle Stop Café will offer a welcoming atmosphere while serving coffees, teas, sandwiches, wraps, and baked goods that are healthy, local, and fair-trade. A stage and a professional quality sound system will be included, offering a platform for the women and community members to share their poetry, music, and stories. Sharing stories of healing, hope, and love is a vital part to the Magdalene and Thistle Farms community. “A story in every cup,” the Café’s mantra, is highlighted by the collecting of donated teacups with a personal story behind them. These beautiful contributions will be commemorated in a special coffee table book, including a photograph and the story behind each teacup. If you have teacups to donate, please email Courtney.
Thistle Stop Café, located next door to the Thistle Farms office and manufacturing facility, is under construction now and is projected to open in spring 2013. If you would like to support the launch of the Café, see the links below. Please put "Café" in the "Purpose" field.
Thistle Farms is a social enterprise of Magdalene which was founded in 1997 by Becca Stevens, an Episcopal priest on Vanderbilt's campus. Magdalene is a residential program for women who have survived lives of prostitution, trafficking, addiction and life on the streets.
These are a few highlights of the Magdalene program:
- For two years, we offer housing, food, medical and dental needs, therapy, education and job training without charging the residents or receiving government funding.
- Our six homes function without 24-hour live-in staff, relying on residents to create a supportive community, maintain recovery, and share household tasks.
- Women come to Magdalene from prison, the streets and from across the Southeast and the country.
- The women of Magdalene/Thistle Farms range in age from 20-50, and many have been sexually abused between the ages of 7-11, began using alcohol or drugs by 13, have been arrested on average a hundred times, or have spent about 12 years on the street prostituting.
- 72% percent of the women who join Magdalene are clean and sober 2 1/2 years after beginning the program.