Help us purchase a home for Refuge! Here's a little back story and why your contribution matters:
When we launched Refuge Coffee Co. in 2015...
We decided to make job training our top priority. Best decision ever.
We decided to start with a truck. Second best decision ever.
We decided we wouldn't open a shop. Not yet.
But then a very generous business owner in Clarkston offered to rent his parking lot to us for a song. We had a bathroom and some parking, so why not go for it? We opened two days every week in Clarkston. This was risky, because it meant we couldn't cater (where we actually make money) on those days. We took an even greater risk and decided to discount our prices in Clarkston by 15%. Not exactly smart business moves, but somehow we thought it just might work... and it did!
For 16 months, you showed up week after week to drink coffee at rickety tables in the shade of rickety tents. You showed up even when it rained or the sunshine made the air under those tents as hot as a steaming cortado. When you were never quite sure if we'd be open that day. When you'd drive up just as we were closing.
In those first few months, people from over 52 countries came to drink coffee or tea with us at our little patch of asphalt with a sunflower painted on it. Then the same business owner offered to let us use his building, complete with a cool industrial garage. We got our community revved into action and transformed it into our little dream come true: A Coffee Shop in the little city CNN has called "the most diverse square mile in the world".
We grew. This last month, we've seen more growth than ever:
Three new trainees hired!
A new truck outfitted and ready to roll!
Opening the Refuge Coffee Garage (our coffee shop) six days a week!
Even with all the growth, we know new non-profits are fragile beings. What happened last month proves it. The bank foreclosed on "our" corner. We've been asked to move out by December 1st. Unless, that is, we make a viable offer to purchase the property.
That's where you come in. Will you help us do just that? Create a permanent home for REFUGE? Our $50,000 goal is, of course, not enough to buy the property, but it IS enough to let our community of those who love refugees, justice and Refuge Coffee have skin in this crazy game.
We know you want us to continue this work. With our own space, we can hone the Welcome machine we've become. We can hire new refugee and immigrant trainees, offer them a living wage job and job training. We can open the Refuge corner to Clarkston and beyond for more programs, events and gatherings. Gatherings with no real agenda other than to be a safe place to form new globally diverse friendships. We've learned that if we create the environment (the refuge), you dive in and do the rest!
Will you join us? #home4refuge
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