Recently, we have been promoting Coffee Kids to help coffee-farming families improve their lives.
We received a letter from them which discussed the hardships placed upon many coffee-farming families during the dry months when coffee was not being harvested. Several of the projects that Coffee Kids helps to fund are working to train members of these families for jobs that can sustain them year round.
Another of the projects recently highlighted on their blog partners Coffee Kids with The Advice and Rural Services Center (ASER MAIZ), which “promotes community development by improving economic, social and political conditions within several communities in Veracruz, Mexico.”
In the northern region of Veracruz, rural communities often suffer from easily treatable illnesses due to extremely limited access to health services, nutritious food and to adequate shelter. Even where services are available, such as in rural health clinics, medicines are scarce, and people can barely afford them.
Staple foods, such as corn and beans, have suffered low yields in recent years due to diseased crops. Community members are often vulnerable to the ever-changing climate patterns that can damage and even destroy their food crops.
Other factors, such as low-paying jobs and a high unemployment rate, have considerably weakened the local economy. This keeps families from buying nutritious food, which is often more expensive, making it harder for them to maintain a healthy diet, which leads to illnesses for which the families cannot afford medicine. The end result is a vicious cycle that’s hard for families to break.
This integral health project will promote the use of traditional and preventive medicinal knowledge to reduce the number of curable diseases among the population. In addition, this project will diversify the production and consumption of food by training participants to take advantage of high-yield crops and promoting the recovery of lost local crops. At the same time, it will introduce beekeeping as an alternative source of income and as a dietary supplement
On the counter next to the bulk coffee bean display is a donation box and some pamphlets with more information. Next time you stop by the Black Drop, throw a few coins in the box – every little bit helps.
From the Coffee Kids site:
Our staff works with local organizations in Latin America to create programs in education, health awareness, microcredit, food security and capacity building in coffee-farming communities. These efforts allow coffee farmers to reduce their dependence on the volatile coffee market and confront the most pressing community needs.
- Coffee Kids partners with local organizations in coffee regions that work directly with coffee-farming communities.
- Our partners provide technical resources, training, and follow-through to communities to implement grass-roots projects.
- We provide the resources that enable our partners and their communities to put their vision into action.
- We facilitate idea-sharing exchanges between project participants and other organizations to find solutions to common problems.
- All projects are designed by community members and based on their needs and priorities.
Because every coffee-farming community is unique, every Coffee Kids project is unique. What is common is an attitude of respect for all people’s values, cultural integrity, intelligence and ingenuity.