Changing the World, One Bowl at a Time

By Elena Webster
Photography by Three Bears

Porridge has forever been linked to Goldilocks, but two business-savvy youths have reinvented it for a modern audience. The popular breakfast food is often depicted as a beige mush; however, the porridge offered by Three Bears is a bowl full of vibrant colours and deliciousness. Better yet, it has a purpose.

Ben and KP established the social enterprise in early 2017. The pair from Perth saw Three Bears as a marketing opportunity to raise awareness of food insecurities; specifically, the impact it has on kids in schools. In fact, they set up shop at RMIT’s city campus in August; you might’ve seen them around!

Three Bears have been in close contact with Lyndon Galea, the man behind Eat Up Australia, an organisation which delivers food to children at school. Three Bears is still in its early stages, but with a realistic goal to turn a profit within the next six months, 100% of that profit will be going straight into feeding hungry kids. Eat Up Australia has delivered 80,000 lunches since 2013, and is currently helping out 101 schools in Australia.

I’m very motivated by the ability of business to power social change. I’m particularly passionate about not only feeding these kids but also helping them become agents of change that’ll take the skills we give them home with them.

  • Ben

The pair have recently finished up a two-week stint at RMIT, providing students and staff with nutritious brain food – combining porridge with bagels. The pop-up shop was the start of a business venture between Three Bears and, an initiative started by entrepreneur Dan Poole.

Three Bears and are fronting the social enterprise merge, with a permanent store set to open in Brunswick this September. They’ll be selling coffee alongside porridge in the AM and bagels in the PM.

100% of the profits from porridge sales will be going to Eat Up Australia. The profits from the bagels and coffee will be directed towards another vital cause: youth homelessness. All of Dan’s social enterprises donate their profits to Launch Housing, a group that gets young people off the streets while also helping them achieve TAFE qualifications and find work.

Ben and KP have created their future and in the process have helped change the future for kids in Australia. The product of a generous marketing graduate and a nutrition graduate with a penchant for porridge has been a whirlwind. Ben says after they were accepted into a social enterprise accelerator, everything just happened from there…

We studied for four months, got a logo designed and then started trading at farmers’ markets. Now we’re at this point where in another year’s time, Three Bears will be a fully fledged business with multiple staff.

The RMIT pop-up shop broke even, and although didn’t see a huge amount in the way of profits, they admit that the opportunity taught them a lot. Regardless, RMIT students can still be involved in effecting change and helping Three Bears help combat youth hunger. How? By heading over to Brunswick and grabbing a little bowl of heaven or a halo of delicious proportions – I’m talking porridge and bagels.

So, grab a spoon, and be a part of the change.

Catalyst has been the student publication of RMIT University since 1944. We may be older than your parents but we’re still going strong!

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