Drink coffee … do good!

CafeSmart will be painting the town yellow on Friday, August 5, donating your coffee dollars to local community groups and not-for-profits who help combat homelessness on our city streets.

The annual one-day event calls on the coffee industry to help raise funds and promote awareness around one of Australia’s most pertinent social issues, homelessness. Cafes sign up to participate in the event and donate $1 from every coffee sold on the day to StreetSmart, the organisation behind the CafeSmart initiative.

StreetSmart works on a philosophy that supports locality. Donations are fed back into projects as close to where they are raised as possible, funding small organisations that are embedded in local communities. This philosophy allows StreetSmart to operate at a grassroots level and provide direct support to the organisations which are on the ground delivering critical services within their communities.

There are more than 30 CBD-based cafes participating this year, across all areas of the city. Well-known industry names include Axil Coffee Roasters, Sensory Lab, Quists Coffee, Brother Baba Budan and Toby’s Estate. All five EARL Canteen locations are also participating, as are the Famish’d sites.

Funds raised from participating cafes in the CBD will be contributed to services and organisations such as Homeless of Melbourne (HoMie), Youthlaw, Travellers Aid, The Big Issue, Youth Projects and Housing for the Aged Action Group.

More than 490 cafes participated in CafeSmart 2015, helping to raise more than $135,000, and 2016 is set to be even bigger. The event is held in the first week of August to coincide with Homelessness Week. Since its inception in 2011, CafeSmart has raised close to half a million dollars and continues to grow year on year.

Coffee roasters, and other members of the industry, can also take part in the event and are encouraged to contribute in ways that are meaningful to their business and position within the supply chain. Founder and CEO of StreetSmart, Adam Robinson, is positive about the future of the initiative and its accessibility within the industry. The increase in roaster participation over recent years has fostered a wider expansion of the initiative and inspired growth.

In a city renowned for its cafe culture and quality coffee, the initiative presents a simple solution for patrons to give back to their local communities and take action against a critical societal issue purely by indulging in their daily caffeine fix.

So on Friday, August 5 be sure to grab your daily (or multiple) coffee from a participating café and make it count. Drink coffee, do good.

To find a participating café near you visit

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