Much has happened with our daughter's Happy Cup Coffee, a fledgling coffee roast in an intensely competitive market: Portland, Oregon. Or, as Rachel says herself, in the video at the end, "One of 50 local roasts."
Last week it was mentioned--along with a terrific local photo in the Huffington Post. Happy Cup began only nine months ago.
The smiling guy above is offering samples of the brew at New Seasons Market, one of seven in Portland. The Hawthorne store featured in the Huff Post is in Rachel's neighborhood. (We mostly go to the older and larger Seven Corners store.)
Over the summer, Happy Cup Coffee has had much attention from media outlets as well as coffee drinkers. There may be 50 roasters in town, but this one has a Mission: providing a competitive wage and a full life to adults with disabilities--people with potential. As part of Mom's Marketing effort, I've posted about the coffee earlier here and here. It will, of course, reappear.
Featured in the August issue of The Oregon Jewish Review, Rachel described how the growth of Happy Cup has been fueled by positive response from local businesses:
"We found ourselves in 19 groceries in three months. We went from zero pounds in month one to 2,000 pounds in month three...no matter [how big we grow] don't want to automate. We want to create jobs."
Rachel began Full Life twelve years ago to develop programs for the disabled. It is the parent company for the roaster. One hundred per cent of Happy Cup's profits go to Full Life's vocational and recreational programs.
Last month she wrote an Op-Ed article for the Oregonian, "Fixing Oregon's ADA lapse by creating meaningful jobs for adults with disabilities." Developing employment opportunities in the current economy for her clients has always been a challenge, especialy jobs with meaningful wages. She suggests that Oregon encourage private companies like hers to encourage the creation of private companies offering:
...integrated employment -- either full time or part time -- for which employees would earn a competitive wage, something many adults with disabilities are not used to receiving. These companies would be safe places for adults with disabilities where they could learn job skills, perform meaningful tasks and interact with the community.
Of the several local TV news stations that ran stories about her program, I especially like this one where you see and hear Full Life women and men working at the Happy Cup Roaster--and Rachel explaining how it all works.
The HAPPY CUP COFFEE BLOG from the roaster's website is newest addition to my Blogroll. Stories, new ideas, products featured from the disability world.