On Wednesday afternoons, David Sisk measures out coffee granules in a back room of Five Loaves Food Pantry to make sure every bag is filled with exactly one pound of locally roasted beans.
He’s one of a half dozen or so young adults with special needs bused from Wylie Independent School District to Sachse’s Five Loaves Food Pantry to help get "Coffee with a Purpose" out the door to local shops.
The product was the brainchild of Audrey Wallace, who long ago dreamed of operating her own roastery.
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"They said what do you want to do? And I said 'I want to roast coffee' and they said, 'for what point? What’s the purpose, you know?' And I said, 'I don’t know, but one day I’ll figure it out,'" said Wallace.
And after taking over as the director of Five Loaves, Wallace found that purpose.
"We needed a way to create revenue for the pantry," said Director of Marketing and Sales Morgan Rizzo.
Now a few times a month, Wallace and others roast beans shipped in from Honduras on donated equipment.
"In the hot, hot summertime we try to do enough ahead of time," said Wallace.
Then the beans are cooled with box fans to stop the roasting process for light, dark and French roasts.
At $10 a bag, Rizzo says they're able to turn each pound of coffee into 28 pounds of food for local families in need.
Though sales started locally, Rizzo's found herself shipping more in the last few months to places like California, Ohio and Virginia.
"It's crazy to see how God has taken something as simple as coffee and benefited the community as a whole," said Rizzo.
Not only has that helped the pantry increase the number of families it serves, but it's created purpose for the students who help each week.
"Through faith and God...and he just brought it all together," said Wallace.
So far, the project has provided nearly 6,000 pounds of food for families in need.
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