What Do We Value?

Since the average attention span these days is purported to be just six seconds, we started this post knowing we’d probably have to break it into parts. If you missed part one, you can read it here.

It’s a very hard exercise to try to state what you stand for in very few words. If you haven’t ever done it, you might try it. It takes much deep thought and introspection to dispel what you just know about yourself – what makes you tick and what makes you come alive – into words. But the process causes you to come to know yourself better, and is a great way to check whether your actions are consistent with what you say you value. Often times it seems the world is “rigged” to take us off balance and get us distracted from living our core values. To that we say “progress, not perfection”. Striving to a point of perfection is a rabbit hole from which we may never emerge. So, we use our stated values to guide our decision-making as a company, and as a litmus test as to whether we should undertake something or move in a contemplated direction. Does it match what we value?

In Part One, we expanded on our values of Simplicity, Authenticity and Creativity. By no means in order of importance, here are a few more ideas we place a lot of value in.

  • Hope – We believe that hope is a foundational element in every person. We hope for peace. We hope for great things for our kids and families. We hope for prosperity. We hope for good health. What we hope for can often be a greater motivator than what we already possess. Sometimes hope is the only thing that keeps a person alive. No matter what our current reality, we can have hope for a better future. It’s why we started One Cup – to be a conduit for hope to come to bear in reality.
  • Transformation – We like to make old things new, dull things vibrant and ugly things beautiful. Our café spaces are living evidence of this value expressed. Our newest shop is housed in what for years was a strip club and known place of darkness. Nothing good ever happened there. When we started, it was an abandoned building adorned with graffiti and without a single window. And it stunk. After the building was gutted, we scraped, sanded and hammered. We installed reclaimed wood and many recycled and repurposed items to transform the space and created a lively, warm living room for the community. Most of all we love to see people transformed. Knowing that every bag we sell can create an immense positive change in the lives of children and families is truly what fuels us.
  • Social Justice – We believe that all people are created equal. We are all born naked and dependent on others for survival. We are all born as citizens and co-inhabitants of earth. And if it could be possible, we should all enjoy basic human rights for sustenance, safety and dignity – not just those born into privilege (and if you have bus fare, you are privileged), but all people. In today’s age of abundance, we believe it is possible. There is enough food produced to feed all – no one should go hungry. There is enough wealth to create clean water access for all – no one should get sick or die because the only water they can get is contaminated. No one should be forced or fooled into slavery. No one should be oppressed.

We have chosen to form our entire company around these principals, a conduit to effect change. We have created our own version of “power to the people” – in that your purchase has power. By purchasing something as simple as a bag of coffee – something you are going to buy anyway, you are able to impact the lives for good in some of the world’s toughest places. See for yourself here.

At One Cup, customers become benefactors. And together, we become Agents of Change. We invite you to come change the world with us – One Cup at a time.