Thanksgiving Coffee Co. of Fort Bragg founders Joan and Paul Katzeff (right in photo) have spent 37 years roasting great coffee and promoting economic and social justice and environmental protection. They do it because it’s in their blood. But now they have received a prestigious award from the Tufts University Global Institute for Leadership for their Mirembe Kawomera (Delicious Peace) coffee project. A big award for two big hearts.
Press Release issued about the award presented March 4:
BOSTON, Mass. – The Tufts University Institute for Global Leadership on March 4 awarded Thanksgiving Coffee Co. of Fort Bragg, Calif. the prestigious Dr. Jean Mayer Global Citizenship Award for supporting a coop of Muslim, Christian and Jewish coffee farmers in Africa. Former winners of the award include Nobel Laureate Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
Thanksgiving Coffee shares the award this year with The Mirembe Kawomera (Peace Coffee) Cooperative in Mbale, Uganda and Kulanu, a grassroots, U.S. volunteer not-for-profit Jewish organization working with communities around the world.
To celebrate the award and share the Peace Kawomera story with locals, Thanksgiving Coffee President Joan Katzeff will host a limited-seating African-inspired dinner at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 18 at the Caspar Community Center in Caspar. Only 100 tickets ($15) will be available at The Mendocino Bakery in Mendocino, Tangents in Ft. Bragg and at the door will be sold for the event, with the money going back to the Uganda coffee cooperative for the purchase of mosquito nets to help prevent malaria.
Four members of the Cooperative (a Jew, a Christian, a Muslim and an Anglican) and the two project directors from Thanksgiving Coffee will be there to tell their story. There will be music by the Coastal Peace Singers. a as well as the Ugandans singing peace songs in their native language. There will also be a slide show of recent photos of the cooperative at work and play. Free samples of the Fair Trade, USDA-certified organic Mirembe Kawomera coffee will be given to attendees to take home and brew for breakfast the following day.
Praise from the Global Institute
In a written statement, Institute Director Sherman Teichman praised the winners “for your wonderful innovative and powerful efforts on behalf of alleviating poverty, creating accountable and sustainable trade practices, encouraging peace and promoting interfaith harmony.”
“By buying and marketing the Fair Trade and Certified Organic coffee produced by the Muslim, Jewish, and Christian owned Peace Kawomera Cooperative, we are creating the economic foundation on which peace and prosperity can be built by 705 small-scale farmers, and the 10,000 members of their families,” said Ben Corey-Moran, project co-director for Thanksgiving.