A new bakery has opened in Stoke Newington, but this new bakery won’t just be about sweet treats, cakes and cookies – this new bakery is part of a wider social enterprise which seeks to empower vulnerable women through baking, and it’s also got the backing of a certain Bake Off star.

Luminary Bakery on Allen Street is the brainchild of founder Alice Boyle. Boyle, whose background is in youth and community work, has teamed up with Bake Off 2016 quarter finalist Benjamina Ebuehi to help bring this enterprise into existence.

Part café part social enterprise, Luminary Bakery grew out of Boyle’s work for Kahaila, a church and charity with a café on Brick Lane. Kahaila supports vulnerable women, but the Luminary Bakery aims to empower women through a training and support programme, where women can learn about baking and gain new skills which boost their employability.

Boyle said: “I have always had a passion to see women empowered. Inequality frustrates me, and it’s something I’ve always felt quite passionate about.”

She continued: “[Benjamina] is an amazing woman and really excited to be involved in something that uses her skill and her passion to help people”.

Ebuehi, while also involved in her own enterprises and charitable work, is pleased to be passing on what she learned on the BBC hit show to the women being supported by the Luminary Bakery.

“I’ve always been interested in social enterprises so this really just takes my love of baking and uses it to encourage women, which is especially interesting for me. So I thought, women, baking, empowerment – yeah! It’s a good mix.”

In addition to morning baking classes and employability skills training, each month the women involved with the Luminary Bakery will learn a new baking skill, while Ebuehi will be taking workshops.

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Boyle is also keen to set up a support network to ensure the women who receive training are supported afterwards.

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