During Homelessness Week 2021 cafes across all states and territories are becoming homelessness advocates by raising awareness about the devastating crisis facing thousands of Australians without a home, and encouraging customers to dig deep to help provide vital funding. Cafes will also be donating $1 per coffee sold on Friday 6 August. What a huge effort in such a tough year.
Team at Kwik Koffee Busselton WA
This year, on the 9th of August, over 800 cafes, businesses and coffee roasters teamed up with their customers to raise just over $200,000. It was a massive community effort and by working together we are going to impact hundreds of lives. Thanks to everyone who got involved. Read More
The last few weeks of the year are always a mad scramble, and here at StreetSmart, we’re no different. With DineSmart is in full swing, behind the scenes we’ve been busy wrapping up CafeSmart 2018. We recently announced our Fundraising Awards and most importantly – reviewing grants and distributing proceeds to local projects.
It’s always exciting to bring you this news, which is the culmination of a lot of work for us and over 850 small business partners across Australia. Thanks to this effort, CafeSmart Community Grants are now making their way to 159 projects. Read More
Danielle Mann is co-owner of two of Darwin’s first specialty coffee cafes – Besser Kitchen & Brew Bar and Laneway Speciality Coffee. Both premises serve up high-quality Campos Coffee and are among CafeSmarts most committed participants.
Danielle has been a part of CafeSmart for six years, first joining us when she was operating a cafe in Sydney. “When I moved back to Darwin, getting our new cafes on board with CafeSmart was one of the first things we did. Even though is a national campaign – you know that it is supporting people in your own backyard and that is really important.
In our area, we have supported two projects that support women and children escaping domestic violence. That is such important impact, and small grants can make a big difference.”
Up North, our CafeSmart grants support the Aboriginal and Islander Women’s Shelter and Dawn House. The Northern Territory has the highest rates of domestic violence in the country, which is why our grants are lending a hand to the work these organisations do. Last year Dawn House supported 500 families in their crisis and transitional housing and our CafeSmart grant helped to fund their children’s school holiday program.
Susan Crane from Dawn House said a bit of fun can make a big difference to children experiencing crisis. “Most of the mother’s we see are on income support, so they would not normally be able to access these types of programs. For children recovering from trauma, getting out of the shelter to go skating and have a bit fun is really positive.”
When CafeSmart sign-up time rolls around each year, Danielle’s two premises are the first to populate our map of participating cafes. She explains that it’s an opportunity to raise funds, awareness, and to be a little creative in supporting the local community.
“CafeSmart is a great way to get raise awareness, involve customers, and it’s a great uplifting event for the staff too. This year, I think we’ll get everyone dressed up in the bright CafeSmart yellow.”
Although her two busy cafes are among the top fundraisers – Danielle is keen to drum up more support for the CafeSmart cause in the Darwin area.
“Darwin is a such a small place, so I know lots of the other cafe owners personally. Through those personal connections and talking about what our cafes are doing – I hope to encourage another 10 cafe’s in Darwin to come on board and raise $5000 for our area.”
One of the humbling things about CafeSmart is that it is a nationwide campaign, driven by local people who care about their community. I asked Danielle what drives her commitment to the campaign.
“The stigma around homelessness doesn’t really match the reality – homelessness can impact anyone. I just want to do what I can, and I think CafeSmart is a simple way to do that”
We will be bringing you more #LocalHero stories in the coming weeks – from cafes big and small.
CafeSmart is a campaign built on the energy and commitment of the coffee industry around Australia. Campos Coffee have been a CafeSmart Roasting Partner for six years, and have taken out our Coffee Roaster Award for the last three.
With this year’s campaign rounding the bend, I caught up with Campos Director Rafael Bartowski about what CaféSmart means for their business. Read More
The StreetSmart concept began in London when one restaurant owner wanted to help a group of young people rough sleeping near by to her premises. She started to collect donations from her customers, so they could buy bedding and warm clothes. Local people helping local people, the idea was as simple as that.
That one small act of kindness in a local London restaurant evolved into StreetSmart – an organisation powered to crowd source donations from for local impact.
In Australia there are over one hundred thousand people without a safe place to call home. Seeing the potential of StreetSmart to make a dent in that statistic, Adam Robinson founded StreetSmart Australia.
With such a strong café culture, StreetSmart Australia found a natural alliance with the coffee roasting industry and the neighbourhood café. With their support, one of our major initiatives today is CaféSmart – a single day of fundraising that unites coffee lovers to help end homelessness.
In six short years CaféSmart has raised over six hundred thousand dollars, and supported hundreds of grassroots organisations that are changing lives.
When we take half an hour from our work day to enjoy a cup of coffee, we might not connect a micro business in Rwanda or a women’s shelter in our local area – but boutique coffee roasters are proving that business can do good in lots of unexpected ways.
Single O are one of the darlings of boutique coffee culture in Sydney, and they are shunning the faceless blends and unfair trading practices to create a premium product with a face, and a story to tell. For Emma and Dion at Single O in Sydney, good coffee and impact go hand in hand –
“It’s in our blueprint to look at the ways we can impact positively. From fair sourcing, to environmental practices – right down to the neighbourhood café – we are constantly exploring ways to have a positive impact.”
When StreetSmart started to branch out from it’s Melbourne base into NSW, Single O where one of our first roasters to jump on board. As their wholesaler customer list has grown, they have mobilised their cafes with them.
With the Single O teams’ support, CaféSmart grants have been able to fund services that support women fleeing domestic violence, and asylum seekers who don’t qualify for the social safety net many of us take for granted.
Five Senses’ story is not too different. Founder Dean Gallagher took a trip to Papua New Guinea that would become a lasting relationship with a growing community there. As the business took off, impacting people positively across the supply chain became part of day-to-day.
Ben Bicknell is a well known face in the coffee community, and is one of the driving forces behind Five Senses’ local impact initiatives.
“From investing in growing communities, through to raising funds for grassroots projects that support the homeless through CaféSmart here in Australia – it’s interesting to keep thinking about how we can coalesce our impact through the supply chain – from the farm gate to the neighbourhood café.”
Although Five Senses are able to mobilise impressive amounts of donations on the day, Ben is keen to do more.
“CaféSmart happens once a year, and the impact from that one day is huge. I want to explore how we can reach more people, and get others engaged around the issue of homelessness.”
The funds mobilised by Five Senses support local programs like Second Bite, which reclaims food that would go to waste and distributes it to community food programs. Five Senses also donate their surplus to the program, because as Ben says, “everyone deserves the joy that a good cup of coffee brings.”
Single O and Five Senses are just two inspiring examples of businesses doing good, and part of StreetSmarts’ growing network of roasters and cafés getting behind local initiatives to end homelessness.
When we look back to that one restaurant owner who wanted to help people in her neighbourhood – it is incredible to think just how far that simple act of kindness travelled, and how many lives it changed.
CaféSmart takes place on August 4 in cafés all across Australia.
To become a CafeSmart Roaster Partner check info here
You can check out participating cafes, and view funded projects on our map here.
We will be publishing this years’ participating locals from mid-June onwards.
On August 7th, 491 cafes, 27 coffee roasters and thousands of coffee drinkers helped raise $135,612 to fund local grassroots homeless projects. For every coffee sold, cafes donated $1, coffee roasters supplied beans and customers chipped in.
Across Australia, coffee heads came together to effect change in their local communities. 100% of the funds raised by CafeSmart combined with other funds raised by StreetSmart have now been allocated through 132 Community Grants totaling $151,800. Grants target helping people who are homeless or at risk in communities where cafes have raised the funds.
Adam Robinson CEO of StreetSmart Australia said “Having over 500 small businesses involved and engaged during National Homeless Prevention Week, not only raised vital funds but also created great awareness around the issue of homelessness and what people can do to help. Yet again the coffee industry has shown how generous and community minded they are. The funding raised goes to some of our smallest, yet vital, community groups and not for profits, who have seen funding stripped out of the sector.”