YWCA St. Paul will close at 5 p.m. on Friday, September 17 for a Covid-19 Vaccine Clinic.

When inside our facility, face coverings are required for all employees (regardless of vaccination status) and fitness members and all others who are unvaccinated. We are committed to maintaining the safety and well-being of everyone visiting our facility, and highly recommended that everyone wear face coverings when inside our facility. Please read the full update.

YWCA St. Paul logo

YWCA St. Paul’s Youth Programs Manager Serving Coffee and the Community

For La’Shante (Shaunie) Grigsby, YWCA St. Paul’s Youth Programs Manager, coffee shops have provided the space for creativity, as well as comfort and camaraderie. They have afforded her the opportunity to build both personal and professional connections as she cultivated her passions.

For the past 4.5 years, Shaunie has spent her days working at YWCA St. Paul to empower young people to build bright future and achieve their dreams. In her role, she leads programming that helps young people affirm who they are, and supports them in building leadership skills, employment readiness and academic success. Shaunie has also worked closely with the Young Women’s Initiative of Minnesota, a first-of-its-kind partnership between the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and the State of Minnesota aimed at improving equity and opportunities for and with young women. YWCA St. Paul is proud to host the Cabinet, providing leadership training and advocacy development to its members.

When thinking about her own dreams, she focused on how she would be able to blend her love of coffee shops with providing young women and gender-expansive youth with opportunities to better themselves.

And that is how Flava Café, the first Black-owned coffee shop in St. Paul’s Frogtown neighborhood was born. Scheduled to open in October, Flava Café will be located at Frogtown Crossroads, a development on the northwest corner of University Avenue and Dale Street.

The name Flava Café came out of Grigsby’s love of ’90s pop culture, particularly the show “Living Single,” which focuses on a woman who runs a culture magazine called “Flavor.”

More than a coffee shop, Flava Café will offer a career-readiness and personal development program for young women, transgender and nonbinary youth of color ages 16 to 24. The program will consist of a nine month internship where the young people will work in the café in a variety of roles – from barista to kitchen staff to social media and marketing. They will also receive professional development training and coaching to increase their self-efficacy and employment skills, all through a cultural lens.  

“The coffee shop aligns well with my dreams and aspirations, as well as the needs of the community. I’m adding my own flavor to youth development and empowerment, also to the cafe culture space. I want Flava Café to be thought of as ‘the spot’ for people, especially Black people, to come together in a safe space and build connections, while obtaining the resources to prepare for careers and life goals,” said Shaunie.

Throughout the creation of Flava Café, Shaunie received tremendous support from YWCA St. Paul. “I am so grateful for YWCA St. Paul and the care and support of both the wonderful staff and the amazing young women we serve.”  

Read More from YWCA St. Paul

black woman wearing face mask pointing at band aid on arm after receiving covid-19 vaccination

Free COVID-19 Vaccine Event (Ages 12+, Registration Required)

Are you fully vaccinated? If you haven’t already gotten your shot, you can be vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine at the YWCA St. Paul Health & Fitness Center (HFC). Clinicians from Community Clinics will be administering the Pfizer (2 dose) vaccine on September 17 between 5-7 p.m. (first and second dose).

Read More »
Two YW Staffers (African-American women) stand beside several boxes of personal hygiene items

Thank You CHS For Your Partnership

YWCA St. Paul thanks CHS for partnering with us for Women’s Equality month. The CHS team made a generous donation of 13 boxes of personal hygiene products—ranging from soap to hairbrushes—that will be provided to our Housing and individual participants.

Read More »

YWCA St. Paul uses cookies to give you the best user experience. If you continue to use our services, we will assume that you agree to the use of such cookies.