The Lucy Foundation’s model shows the value of diversity in business. We work with communities to establish their social, economic and environmental needs. We then calculate how we can meet these needs through sustainable trade.
Our first project is in Pluma Hidalgo working with local families to increase the quality and yield of their coffee crops. We empower all family members, especially those with disabilities, to contribute to the project .
- Workshops: We hold bi-monthly workshops with the families about specialty coffee practices and environmentally sustainable agricultural methods.
The workshops are designed in a way that is accessible to family members with disabilities, so everyone can be part of the learning process.
- Bee Keeping: With the decline of bees in the world, an important aspect of this project is encouraging the families and local people to engage in effective beekeeping. A healthy bee population will help pollinate the coffee tree flowers
- Work Experience: Many people with disabilities in Pluma Hidalgo are overprotected and do not take part in family and community life. So we have begun working one-on-one with three men with intellectual disabilities to encourage them to work with us on various Lucy Foundation tasks, outside of their family home. We will expand this programme in 2017.
- Coffee Harvest: We have worked with the families to increase the quality and quantity of their coffee to enable sale at a higher price. All profits from the coffee sales will be reinvested into the programme so that it can continue to grow in 2017.
What we love about this project is that at all stages of production there are opportunities for people with different abilities to play a key role in the end-to-end supply chain of coffee.
At the heart of this project is community. Changing perceptions requires meaningful and inclusive community interactions. And as one of our co-founders, Ben Scott, says:
What’s good for community is good for business.
And who wouldn’t want to be a part of social change just by enjoying a good cuppa!
The Lucy Foundation team is looking for funding and donations in New Zealand, Mexico and around the world. Find out how you can help us out here.