By Claudia Quezada
Chicago got a taste of coffee with purpose! On May 8, our Café Ama coffee arrived at the Mercado del Pueblo in Humboldt Park, where we joined a Puerto Rican community in their weekly event hosted by the Puerto Rican Cultural Center.
Upon arrival, we could instantly feel the amazing and welcoming energy everyone had. As we started brewing our coffee, people would visit our booth -- excited to learn that our beans were directly from Puerto Rico! It was like bringing the community a little piece of our island to them.
Offering samples allowed us to speak with everyone. The conversation would start with “¿y de qué parte de Puerto Rico eres?" which translates to: “which part of Puerto Rico are you from?" After that, we were part of the community.
Being able to bring Café Ama to Mercado del Pueblo allowed us to see the reaction to our organization's purpose. As soon as we said that all our proceeds go to helping kids build businesses, everyone wanted to contribute. It was very rewarding to see that people not only liked the taste of our coffee, but also wanted to help. After this event, I am certain that “coffee with purpose” is the perfect description for Café Ama.
Mercado del Pueblo, boricua roots in Chicago
Mercado del Pueblo is an initiative organized by the Puerto Rican Cultural Center, or PRCC, that provides free rent to vendors and artists to allow them to operate and develop businesses. The space is also open to non-Puerto Ricans – including business owners from Black communities and other Latino communities. The Mercado del Pueblo is located at the corner of Division and Rockwell streets in Humboldt Park. It’s open from 4-8 p.m. Fridays and 10:30 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Social distancing and face masks are required.
Thank you to Puerto Rican Cultural Center for the opportunity! We hope to continue sharing Café Ama with the Chicago community.