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Why Sell Something vs Ask For Donations?

coffee non-profit uganda

I’ve seen the argument plenty that if you want to do something charitable, then just give your money to a charity. The theory is that it will get used better by a charity than a socially responsible organization (or, in our case, a non-profit selling a product). OK, I’ll agree to that. 100%. For example, $9 would go further with World Vision towards providing clean water than that same $9 will go if it’s used to buy our coffee. True.

Here’s the problem: That’s not for me. I’m not good at asking for money. There are TONS of great charitable organizations out there. Absolutely fantastic organizations doing absolutely amazing things. But it’s not for me. I wanted to do something. I wanted to see if there was another model that could work, too.

So I thought, why not tap into money that people are spending outside of their charitable giving? Coffee is a perfect example. How many people buy a bag of Starbucks coffee at the grocery store for $7.50 or $8.00 for a 12oz bag? Our coffee is $9.00 for a 12oz bag, with $3.00 of each bag going back to Uganda. Say the average coffee drinker goes through 2 12oz bags per month. That’s an additional $3.00 they’ve paid for our coffee. Not a big deal. They probably don’t even miss it. But, by purchasing Three Avocados vs Starbucks, they’ve given $6.00 towards projects in Uganda without even thinking about it.

To me, it seems like a great (non-profit) business model.

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