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Coffee the key to a healthier world


Coffee is proving to be a popular and inspiring fund-raising conduit for innovative ecological action projects in South Australian schools.

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A number of Catholic Education SA schools have embraced the Naturally Smart coffee project developed by Professor Paul Clarke, at St Mary’s University College, London, and a team of international educators and environmentalists.

The Pop-up Foundation’s Naturally Smart program connects schools around the world with resources, training and support for teachers and students to help them create local projects that contribute to a healthier global environment.

Sustainability projects are funded by the sale of ethically traded coffee to staff and families.

Bill Giles, a teacher and spokesperson for the Naturally Smart program, said schools that had embraced the Community Coffee Project in South Australia in 2017 included St Therese at Colonel Light Gardens; St Thomas, Goodwood; St Joseph’s, Kingswood; St Pius X, Windsor Gardens; St Joseph’s, Tranmere; Immaculate Heart of Mary, Brompton and Holy Family Catholic School, Parafield Gardens. Many more are beginning the program in 2018.

“We are working to expand this network in private and public schools to connect teachers and students in environmental care projects that make a difference,” he said.

“Whole roast bean coffee and roast ground coffee, packed in Adelaide to ensure quality and freshness, along with certified completely compostable capsule or pod coffee, is available.

“Each time somebody in the community purchases coffee through the project the school receives proceeds to use in its own way with remaining profits dedicated to fund Naturally Smart environmental and humanitarian projects across Australia and the world.

“As new schools come aboard, a coffee tasting event can be arranged to increase awareness and encourage participation in the project and the objectives of the Naturally Smart program.

“After initial school-based coffee orders, we encourage families and individuals to transition to an online ordering system with a unique code to ensure profits from purchases are paid to the appropriate school to fund environmental education projects.”

Amanda Humeniuk, principal of St Therese at Colonel Light Gardens, said the school chose to be involved in the project because it was a “tangible way of linking the curriculum with an opportunity to reflect on Catholic social teaching, and how these principles can guide us to make just and fair decisions as consumers”.

“A young person often has decisions made for them by a parent, so the more we can educate our children on these principles, the more hope we have to make real change,” she said.

“It is a brilliant way to connect to our wider mission as a Catholic Church and, as an added bonus, the coffee is delicious.”

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GROUNDED: From left, Caitlin Rampazis, St Therese principal Amanda Humeniuk and Abby Clark with packs of ethical coffee.



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