“Drink Coffee. Help Refugees”

A head scratcher or a no-brainer. There is no in between. But we are here to help clear up the connection between the second most traded commodity in the world and the empowerment of refugees through career-building online education.

As a social enterprise, HireChance is passionate about bridging the gap in higher education for forcibly displaced persons around the world. This means refugees, asylum seekers, and internally displaced persons (IDPs). By tapping into the massive global coffee industry – valued at more than USD$100 billion- and the Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) industry –valued at USD$5.16 billion in 2019- our mission comes to life: coffee is our revenue stream through which we are able to fund career-building education for forcibly displaced persons around the world.

But is there a deeper connection between coffee and the refugee crisis? The answer is a resounding ‘yes’. If you take a look at the countries that comprise the Coffee Belt, you will find that most –if not all- are countries of origin or destination –or in many cases both- for forcibly displaced persons. For instance, according to the UNHCR, Colombia leads with the highest number of IDPs in the world with 8 million. Ethiopia and Kenya –two of the biggest African producers of coffee- host the largest number of refugees and asylum seekers in Africa, with 735,000 and 492,802 respectively. Indonesia – the world’s fourth largest coffee producer- currently hosts a refugee and asylum seeking population of 14,000 approximately. In Yemen – the birthplace of the coffee trade-, there are currently 4 million IDPs and approximately 276,000 refugees and asylum seekers –mostly from Somalia and Ethiopia-.

Understanding this connection allows us to look at coffee as far beyond a revenue stream, but as a bridge that brings HireChance’s mission together. By sourcing our coffee through direct trade from countries such as Colombia –our first coffee origin- we are supporting the local economies of host countries and empowering the amazing coffee farmers –many of who have been forcibly displaced themselves at some point in their lives- that make our single origin, specialty coffee a reality. In turn, dedicating 20% of our coffee sales in support of our mission allow us to tap into the MOOCs industry to make world-class education accessible for refugees.

For HireChance, coffee is the means through which we aim to impact and empower millions through the power of career-building education.