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JavaJog for a Cause Commits to 2017 in Seattle

JavaJog - NoDate

The founders committee for JavaJog for a Cause, an annual event that raises money and awareness for women in coffee producing communities, announces that no official run will be held in 2016 in Atlanta, but has recommitted to holding the popular event again in 2017 in Seattle. Traditionally held in conjunction with the SCAA Annual Conference and Exhibition, JavaJog has raised more than $65,000 for women in coffee growing communities since it’s inception in 2013.

Citing the increased logistics and cost of running the event in Atlanta, where the SCAA will hold its annual conference and exhibition in 2016, JavaJog organizers have made the decision to postpone the event until 2017, when the SCAA returns to Seattle.

“We remain committed to raising awareness and money for women in coffee growing communities throughout the world. By holding off this year, and returning to Seattle in 2017, where the logistics to run and promote the race are already in place, and the costs associated with producing the event are less, we can ensure the beneficiaries of the race will receive maximum support,” explains Kimberly Easson, co founder of JavaJog for a Cause.

The JavaJog organizing committee remains committed to producing another great fun run and fundraiser when the SCAA returns to Seattle in 2017. “By focusing our efforts on making the 2017 and 2018 runs in Seattle bigger and better, we are confident that our mission to connect women to the coffee community and funnel resources to projects that enable them to improve their position, their well-being and that of their families, farms, communities and organizations, will be met,” Easson added.

Established early in 2013 by Kimberly Easson, Beth Ann Caspersen, and Aimee Russillo. The Founders’ Run was held in Boston with 15 runners and raised $7500, which was donated to the women’s committee of the Sopacdi farmer’s cooperative in South Kivu, DRC. JavaJog 2014 raised more than $35,000 for coffee-farming women in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The $23,000 raised in the 2015 JavaJog for a Cause has been awarded to two organizations working to better the lives of women in coffee growing communities in Ethiopia: Grounds for Health in partnership with Sidamo Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, and the Girls Gotta Run Foundation.

“We want to thank all the runners, supporters and sponsors who have participated in JavaJog since its inception. With your support, women around the world have benefited from this great fundraiser,” said Easson.

To learn more about the cause, visit JavaJog for a Cause. For more information about the race, or sponsorship opportunities, please email javajog@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

JavaJog Welcomes Sponsors for 2015 Run for Ethiopia

2015 JJFC

JavaJog for a Cause organizers welcome 2015 sponsors for the third annual run in Seattle to benefit coffee women in Ethiopia. Starbucks and Metad Plc have signed on as Gold sponsors for the event, with Equal Exchange, Baratza, Spark Technologies and Schluter providing Silver level support, and Equator Coffees & Teas as Bronze level support. Roast Magazine is our Media Sponsor. JavaJog 2015 will be held April 10, starting in Seattle’s South Lake Union Park.

“We are grateful to all our sponsors for this year’s race, says Kimberly Easson, co-founder of the event, which was launched in early 2013 by Easson, Beth Ann Caspersen, and Aimee Russillo, as a way to bring together fun and fitness in the coffee community – all to benefit a great cause. “With their generous support, we are able to bring the race to Seattle, and help us reach our goal of $40,000. JavaJog is still welcoming additional sponsors and runners for the event,” she adds. Last years event brought together more than 200 runners and walkers who raised more than $35,000 for women in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“The support from our sponsors, Starbucks, Metad, Equal Exchange, Baratza, Schluter, Spark Technologies, Equator and Roast Magazine will go a long way in helping us raise awareness and funds for women in coffee farming communities in Ethiopia,” explains Easson.

2014: 10 K starters
2014: 10 K starters

The goal for the Seattle 2015 JavaJog is 300 runners and $40,000 raised for women in coffee farming communities in Ethiopia. “While a much larger goal than last year, we wanted to set a goal that would allow us to raise more money for the cause,” explains Easson. “There are many great organizations doing work in Ethiopia including Grounds for Health, Girls Gotta Run, IWCA Ethiopia, Common River, and Amaro Gayo. And, by raising more money, we can invest in activities across the region working together with local community based organizations. There is no doubt that the need is great, and if we can strengthen our impact through sponsorships and a goal of 300 runners, $40K seemed like a realistic number.”

JavaJog’s ‘Founders Run’ was held in Boston, April 12, 2013. Fifteen runners participated, raising $7500, which was donated to the women’s committee of the Sopacdi farmer’s cooperative in South Kivu, DRC.

For more information about our sponsors, visit Starbucks, Metad Plc, Equal Exchange, Baratza, Spark Coffee Technologies, Schluter, Equator and Roast Magazine websites.
To sign up for this year’s run, or to support the cause, visit the JavaJog Crowdrise site. For more information about the cause, visit JavaJog.org.
For more information about the race or sponsorship opportunities, contact javajog@gmail.com or 202-657-5788.

JavaJog 2014 Funds Yield Swift Results in DRC

Higher Grounds Co-Founder, Chris Treter recently visited Tuuange Coffee Growers’ Cooperative (and JavaJog 2014 award winner through IWCA DRC)  in Eastern DRC:  

“Having participated in the Javajog last year, I was great to see the amazing swift, efficient use of the funds. When I remarked in amazement the low cost of the washing station, Chantal remarked, “that’s what happens when women have control of the money.” Great work!”

Take a look at the impressive result below:

Thanks for this report Chris, and CONGRATULATIONS to Chantal and her leadership with the farmers to make this dream become a reality!!

2015 JavaJog for a Cause: Benefitting Women of Coffee Growing Communities in Ethiopia

2015 JJFC

(January 26, 2105) – JavaJog for a Cause, an annual event that raises money and awareness for women in coffee producing communities, is scheduled to be held April 10, 2015 in Seattle in conjunction with the annual EXPO of the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA). This year’s event, the third race, will benefit women of Ethiopian coffee producing communities, and will provide individuals, teams and corporations the opportunity to contribute to improve livelihoods of women within these communities.

“We chose to focus on Ethiopian women this year to tie to the SCAA’s Portrait Country promotion. Ethiopian coffee is among the most sought-after coffees in the world – and although women play a central role in assuring its quality, especially on the farms and at the processing centers, they remain very much behind the scenes. Political turmoil, an influx of refugees and high rates of poverty have affected many Ethiopians and women bear the brunt; they suffer from high rates of genital mutilation, lack of education and domestic violence – many live without access to clean drinking water or medical facilities.” explained Beth Ann Caspersen, one of JavaJog’s founders.

JavaJog 2015 will build off momentum from the 2014 run, which raised more than $35,000 for the women of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The goal of the 2015 event is to welcome more than 300 runners and walkers, who will raise money for the cause individually or as a team, helping reach the goal of $45,000.

Funds raised will be invested in organizations that work locally to address issues facing Ethiopian women in a variety of areas: among them, health, productivity, training, leadership and advocacy. JavaJog organizers are working with coffee partners on the ground in Ethiopia, targeting potential recipients for this year’s funds. Key groups will be invited to submit proposals, which will be reviewed by an independent committee. Reports of the use of the funds will be given to JavaJog and be made public on the JavaJog website.

Sponsorship of JavaJog 2015 provides companies with a unique opportunity to lead the charge in raising money for the Ethiopian women communities while promoting their brands in one of the newest, most exciting coffee events. Sponsorship levels include: Platinum ($5,000); Gold ($2,500); Silver ($1,00); and Product Sponsors.

Java Jog for a Cause was established early in 2013 by Kimberly Easson, Beth Ann Caspersen, Aimee Russillo. The Founders’ Run was held in Boston with 15 runners and raised $7500, which was donated to the women’s committee of the Sopacdi farmer’s cooperative in South Kivu, DRC. JavaJog 2014 benefitted coffee-farming women in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

To sign up for this year’s run, or to support the cause, visit the JavaJog Crowdrise site. To learn more about the cause, visit JavaJog.org.

For more information about the race, or sponsorship opportunities, please email javajog@gmail.com.

JavaJog for a Cause 2014 Names Grant Recipients

JavaJog 2014 Benefitting Women of the DRC

JavaJog Benefitting Women of the DRC

 

August 24, 2014 – JavaJog for a Cause, an annual event that raises money and awareness for women in coffee producing communities, announces its 2014 Grant Recipients. A total of $35,000 has been allocated to three organizations working in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC): The DRC Chapter of the International Women’s Coffee Alliance, The Eastern Congo Initiative, and Virunga Coffee.

JavaJog - In Globe2 - Green 250Nearly 200 runners came together this past April for the 2nd Annual JavaJog 5K/10K Race in Seattle, raising more than $35,000 in funds for coffee women in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Another smaller race held in conjunction with the annual SCAE conference raised an additional $300 for the cause. The awards were allocated through a rigorous 2-part evaluation process. In late June, the JavaJog Grant Review Committee evaluated proposals. The Committee’s recommendations were then provided to the JavaJog Advisory Committee for final approval and awarding of the grants.

JavaJog for a Cause 2014 grant recipients include:

ECILogo_250The Eastern Congo Initiative (ECI), which will receive $11,500 for Small Business Development for Congolese Cooperatives. The eastern region of Democratic Republic of Congo has enormous potential to produce specialty coffee. Today, with peace and a bright economic outlook, Congolese coffee farmers are driven to increase the quality of their production to provide the international marketplace with specialty Congolese coffee. ECI and the Kahawa Bora Ya Kivu (Fine Coffee of Kivu) coffee project work with three cooperatives, investing in business development throughout the entire value chain. Through JavaJog’s grant, 30 cooperative members will have the chance to travel to successful cooperatives in East Africa, learning from different business models, which can be applicable in DRC, forming strong businesses that can reliably provide quality coffee.

IWCALogo300The DRC chapter of the International Women’s Coffee Alliance will receive $20,000 to support 750 women coffee growers of Lubarika and Ndolera village, and Uvira Territory who struggle daily to establish their rights and position within society. The grant money will be used to purchase equipment and provide infrastructure support for processing and packaging of coffee, which will help the women further meet their goal of establishing their rights and position within society through economic empowerment.

VirungaCoffeeLogo_final2_300Virunga Coffee Company will receive $3,500 for efforts to improve working conditions for women, specifically supporting the improvement of conditions for the women who sort coffee by hand. Typically, throughout most African countries, thousands of tons of coffee beans are hand sorted by women working for a few dollars per day, often in very basic working conditions. Through this grant, Virunga Coffee will make initial investments in the infrastructure, and provide these women in the DRC with a higher salary, a free lunch, and better the working environment which will include new tables, stools and good lighting.

JavaJog 2014 was made possible through a network of volunteers as well as many generous sponsors. Platinum Sponsor for JavaJog 2014 was Westrock Coffee Company, which provides global export opportunities and purposeful employment to partners at origin. Equal Exchange, Baratza and Equator Coffees & Teas provided Bronze Level support, and Roast Magazine served as the Media Sponsor. A number of product sponsors, included Theo Chocolate, Bonavita, Espro and SCAA. Coffee served at the event was from Caffe Vita and Herkimer Coffee.

Plans are underway for the 3rd Annual Race to take place in Seattle, April 10th.
To learn more about the cause, visit JavaJog for a Cause. For more information about the race, or sponsorship opportunities, please email javajog@gmail.com

Great Fun, Great Cause, Great T-Shirts ~ JavaJog’s T-shirts also for a Cause

JavaJog participants have spent weeks training and fundraising for coffee women in the Congo. Now, on race day, April 25th, the 150+ participants will proudly sport fair trade organic t-shirts from FairTri™.

Provided by Tri4Freedom, a group committed to raising awareness about the global extent of human exploitation and empowering survivors and marginalized communities by promoting social and environmental sustainability in sport. FairTri™ T-shirts, made by Freeset Global in India, a women-owned business that brings freedom to survivors of human trafficking.image002

 

 

 

The shirts are made by a group of women in India who have been given a chance to empower themselves in a life free from slavery. More than 27 million people are currently enslaved around the world.

JavaJog for a Cause brings together the coffee community for a fun and fitness event that benefits a great cause, raising funds to invest in community-based efforts to improve the quality of coffee and the lives of the people who produce it, with a particular focus on women. This year’s fundraising goal is $30,000, which will be invested in women’s coffee groups in Eastern Congo, South Lake Kivu region.

Sponsors for JavaJog 2014 include Westrock Coffee Company (Platinum Sponsor), Equal Exchange, Baratza, Schluter and Equator Coffees & Teas are providing Bronze Level support, and Roast Magazine is serving as the Media Sponsor. A number of product sponsors, including Theo Chocolate, and Kind Bars round out the current sponsorship lineup for JavaJog 2014.

To learn more about JavaJog for a Cause, visit JavaJog.org; or to donate to runners/walkers, visit the JavaJog Crowdrise site.

To learn about FairTri’s mission to introduce triathletes to superior quality products that bring freedom to people around the world, including t-shirts and coffee, visit FairTri.org.

We regret that given the overwhelming response to this year’s race, after April 1, we are no longer able to guarantee a t-shirt for every runner.  Great incentive for registering early for next year’s event!

JavaJog for a Cause Welcomes Sponsors for 2014 Run for Congo

JavaJog - In Globe2 - Green - NoJavaJog for a Cause organizers welcome 2014 sponsors for the second annual run/walk to benefit the coffee-farming women in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Westrock Coffee Company, which provides global export opportunities and purposeful employment to partners at origin, has signed on as Platinum Sponsor for the event. Equal Exchange, Baratza, Equator Coffees & Teas, and Schluter Coffee are providing Bronze Level support, and Roast Magazine is serving as the Media Sponsor. A number of product sponsors, including Theo Chocolate, round out the current sponsorship lineup for JavaJog 2014, which will be held April 25, 2014 starting in Seattle’s South Lake Union Park.

“We are grateful to all our sponsors for this year’s race,” says Kimberly Easson, co-founder of the event, which was launched in early 2013 by Easson, Beth Ann Caspersen, and Aimee Russillo as a way to bring together fun and fitness in the coffee community – all to benefit a great cause. “With their generous support, we are able to bring the race to Seattle, and help us reach our goal of $30,000. JavaJog is still welcoming additional sponsors and runners for the event,” she adds.

JavaJog’s ‘Founders Run’ was held in Boston, April 12, 2013. Fifteen runners participated, raising $7500, which was donated to the women’s committee of the Sopacdi farmer’s cooperative in South Kivu, DRC.

“The support from our sponsors – Westrock, Equal Exchange, Baratza, Equator Coffees & Teas, and Roast Magazine – will go a long way in helping us raise awareness and funds for the women in coffee farming communities in the Democratic Republic of Congo,” explains Easson.

We are excited to sponsor this year’s JavaJog.,” says Elizabeth McLaughlin of Westrock. “Like the organizers of JavaJog, we share a common goal of improving the lives of coffee farmers in Central and East Africa through the production of transparent, specialty coffee. We know financial independence is the most empowering thing a woman can have, and that can be achieved through coffee. Groups like JavaJog help create this independence.”

The goal for the Seattle 2014 JavaJog is to raise $30,000 for women in coffee farming communities in the Democratic Republic of Congo. “While a much larger goal than last year, we wanted to set a goal that would allow us to raise more money for the cause,” explains Easson. “There are 8 farmer organizations in the region – Sopacdi is just one. And, by raising more money, we could help to link the groups together, and invest in activities across the region working together with local, community based organizations. There is no doubt that the need is great, and if we can strengthen our impact through sponsorships and a goal of 100 runners, $30,000 seemed like a realistic number. To date, we have more than 60 runners registered and raising money.”

For more information about our sponsors, visit Westrock Coffee Company, Equal Exchange, Baratza, Equator Coffees & Teas, Schluter Coffee and Roast Magazine websites.

To sign up for this year’s run, or to support the cause, visit the JavaJog Crowdrise site. To learn more about the cause, visit JavaJog.org.

For more information about the race, or sponsorship opportunities, please email javajog@gmail.com.

 

 

 

Celebrating International Women’s Day: Spotlight on Coffee Women in the Eastern DR Congo

As the world celebrates International Women’s Day, March 8, we celebrate the triumph of spirit of women from around the world, especially those in Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, and realize that their fight for economic and social freedom continues.

In the past decade, violence, poverty and disease in the DemocratiImmaculeec Republic of Congo have claimed the lives of over 5 million men, women and children. Despite democratic elections and multiple peace agreements, the eastern region is still impacted by conflict—more than 1.3 million people are not able to return to their homes.

Through the tragedy, hope still shines in the coffee farming villages along Lake Kivu in the Eastern DR Congo.  Coffee trees are coming back to life — a reflection of the enduring force of nature and the indelible human spirit of those tending to them.

Yet the uncertainly and threat remains. Every day, the women in Eastern Congo face continued obstacles to their ongoing recovery, as it is one of the most violent and difficult places to be a woman. Whether they are a farmer of coffee or a staple crop, these women continually struggle to find the means to get by and to care for their families.

In an effort to support the recovery of these communities, the second annual JavaJog will be held April 25th in Seattle in conjunction with the Specialty Coffee Association of America’s Annual Conference and Exhibition. JavaJog, which brings together the coffee community for a fun and fitness event that benefits a great cause, will raise funds to invest in community-based efforts to improve the quality of coffee and the lives of the people who produce it, with a particular focus on women.

On Friday, April 25th more than 100 coffee industry professionals will gather at South Lake Union Park in Seattle, WA for the second annual JavaJog 5K (and 10K).

The objective of JavaJog 2014 is to build a collaborative platform of companies and organizations working in the Eastern DR Congo to:

•            Put Congo Coffee, and the communities that produce it, on the map;

•            Elevate the profile of women in these communities; and to

•            Raise funds to invest in community-based efforts to improve quality of coffee and the lives of the people who produce it, with a particular focus on women.

Several coffee-community businesses have signed on to help raise awareness and money for the women in Eastern Congo, joining together with JavaJog in its efforts to reach this year’s goal of $30,000. Westrock Coffee based in North Little Rock, AR, has signed on as Platimum Sponsor of JavaJog 2014. Other sponsors include Equal Exchange, Baratza, and Roast Magazine.

In addition to company sponsors, each participant in JavaJog 2014 will raise money for the cause. Runners and walkers have set up fundraising campaigns on the JavaJog Crowdrise site, and are reaching out to their own networks to spread the word and garner support. Prizes will be awarded to the top fund-raisers.

Last April, at the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) Annual Conference and Exhibition in Boston, fifteen runners raised $7,326 for the women’s committee at the Sopacdi cooperative in the Kivu region of Congo.

The women have invested the funds to make a difference in the lives of women not only from the coffee cooperative, but more broadly for women impacted by the ongoing violence.  Half of the funds were invested to implement specific income generating activities, including small portable mills and a boat engine to provide transport services to the community.  Profits from the project have been transferred to a microcredit and savings institution based in Minova. The other 50% of the funds was donated to local health centers around Minova who regularly attend women affected by sexual violence.

Funds from Java Jog 2014 will be invested through Sopacdi and other community based organizations working in the region through the Eastern Congo Initiative.

Please join JavaJog and its sponsors in our efforts to bring caring industry professionals together in solidarity with women in the Democratic Republic of Congo – to understand, to advocate and to do more – together.

This International Women’s Day, join together with JavaJog in support of these women. Visit JavaJog.org to participate. To support runners and walkers, head on over to Crowdrise. For sponsorship opportunities, please email javajog@gmail.com.