December 31st, 2014 was a gloomy day as Coffee Kids announced it would cease programming due to financial misfortunes. Ending a powerful 26-year run, Coffee Kids had impacted the lives of over 200,000 coffee farming families. Their efforts aimed at improving the quality of life for coffee farmers around the world through health care, food sovereignty projects, sustainability education, financial support and economic diversification.
November 15th, 2015 brought new hope as Coffee Kids announced it would be merging with a like-minded organization, Hanns R. Neumann Stiftung North America, to relaunch efforts. Beginning in Central America and Tanzania, Coffee Kids teams will once again be on the ground, offering training and mentoring to young coffee farmers and their families.
According to the Specialty Coffee Association of America, over 50% of Central American coffee farmers experience food insecurity and malnutrition, and African coffee producers are at even greater risk. Poverty is all too familiar to coffee producers worldwide.
Thankfully, the coffee industry is slowly shifting toward a more sustainable approach to buying and selling coffee. Companies all throughout the coffee chain have adapted systems and buying habits to work toward a better future. The economic climate for coffee is changing, but lasting impact is slow coming.
Coffee Kids stands once again as a beacon of coffee sustainability, food security, and poverty eradication in coffee producing communities.