Of course giving food, housing, and medical aid to the poor is helpful, but we view it as a temporary solution.
We prefer to get involved in more long-term solutions.
That’s why we support not just education, but microfinance as well. We have all heard statistics about how many people are living on less than a dollar a day.
It’s important to help people help themselves.
If they could start a small business, such as a fruit stand, sell fried rice, or fish for their food they might be able to lift themselves out of poverty, but it’s impossible to save up for pots and pans, or yes, even a bamboo fishing pole on that kind of budget.
We believe it’s important to help people help themselves, so we set aside a portion of our profits as microfinance for those in need.
Of course, we’re an idealistic coffee company, not an evil banking corporation.
Our loans are meant as assistance, not another burden, so if we don’t get paid back, it’s not a big deal. If we do get paid back, that money will then be used as microfinance for someone else in need.