Sacred Bean Coffee is a non-profit social enterprise that was pioneered and continues to be run by people overcoming life-controlling issues. We work with socially excluded people to bring you great tasting coffee that helps people in need from the farm to the roasting room.
Here at Sacred Bean, we are as passionate about rehabilitation as we are about our coffee. We have helped people overcoming struggles such as homelessness, criminal offences, and substance abuse. We teach them how to source, roast and brew ethical artisan coffee, which gives them a platform to keep their lives moving upwards.
We believe there is more to coffee than just a drink. Coffee culture has evolved into moments of meaning around human connections. The smells, sounds and feelings can evoke psychological triggers such as memories of people and places. The aesthetics of your favourite café, its eclectic playlists that soundtrack your socialising, the book you read through the steam from your cup, that meaningful conversation that you had with an old friend after agreeing to reunite over a coffee. We believe there is more to coffee than just a drink.
However, to the purist, the connoisseur, a cup of coffee is ultimately that – coffee. To these caffeine worshippers, the coffee must be better than good and that is our guarantee. Not only do our beans brew a delightfully delicious cuppa, but they are ethically sourced directly from the farms themselves, leaving a great taste in every customer’s mouth.
Created by coffee enthusiast, Darren Howie, Sacred Bean Coffee was born out of Darren’s work as a mentor for those overcoming offending behaviours. He took two of his passions, coffee and rehabilitation, and married them together as part of a wider story of bringing people together through his beans. Darren wanted to create a social initiative that would provide opportunities for people returning to society from the Criminal Justice System. This dream then grew into the enterprise it is today, helping people with all kinds of struggles.
Darren is not just the founder of Sacred Bean Coffee, but the first person with life-controlling issues to be assisted by the initiative. After 25 years in the Criminal Justice System and completing long-term drug rehabilitation, Darren turned to coffee. From roasting his own beans at home, to honing his skills in the chancel of St. Peter’s Church in Derby, coffee was the final stage of his rehabilitation. This final stage culminated in the formation of Sacred Bean Coffee with his wife and two friends.
A raw coffee bean needs the right environment and treatment to unlock its potential. This is the mantra that Darren and the Sacred Bean team apply to both its beans and the people we support. The ‘second crack’ is a key stage in coffee flavour development, and here at Sacred Bean we give our employees exactly that. We have faith that all people, despite their backgrounds, have the potential to flourish and contribute positively to society.
They can be the champions of their communities. The transformation starts in our roasting room and continues off out into the world.
Ultimately, we are passionate about providing opportunities for people to learn new skills to strengthen their position to achieve their future goals. Like the potential for our beans to make a fantastic cup of coffee, we believe every individual has the potential to make the world a better place.
Provided with the right support network and a bit of faith, people can and do alter their stories.
“Create the right culture and it will flourish,” – Rev. Darren Howie, Director and Founder of Sacred Bean Coffee.