Last week I wrote about ‘Suspended Coffees’, a trend that is seemingly sweeping across the western world with its message of generosity and kindness. This week I wanted to tell you where to go to find suspended coffees around Dublin, so I investigated further. What I found was not what I had expected.
I met up with Gavin McDonagh, who runs Brioche Café on Aungier Street. He told me that they had signed up to join the suspended coffee movement a little over three weeks ago, and so far only 2 suspended coffees had been bought, and none had been picked up. Mr McDonagh was surprised by this, because even though the Brioche Café attracts a mixed group of people, he thought a majority of them would be interested in this kind of charity, and would have the means to contribute. He also thought there should be people who would be in need of a hot beverage for free, “if you’re talking about underprivileged people, this area has quite a few.”
Mr McDonagh thought the reason for the lack of interest was due to unawareness and that the campaign needed more airspace, yet he himself said he had noticed all the activity online, on Twitter, Facebook or via email. He said “we’ve even had emails from New York with people wanting to do interviews over Skype.”
We discussed how to monitor that shops actually hand out the coffees that are paid for. Mr McDonagh agreed with many other people online that there should probably be some system in place for monitoring the donations. Till such a system exists, the people in Brioche Café will take notes of all coffees purchased, and gladly hand them out to anyone who could use a hot drink for free. Mr McDonagh said, “I’m more than happy to get involved, to do it as a good-will gesture and be part of it.”
The Brioche Café is not the only shop in Dublin that has joined the Suspended Coffee. Caffe’ Italiano on Crow Street in Temple bar, MochaBeans at Pearse Street Station and Soulful Bistro on Manor Street have also decided to join the do-gooders. Caffe’ Italiano could also report a poor response from the public with only one suspended coffee bought, and none handed out.
This is while Suspended Coffee Ireland’s Facebook page has over 2000 likes and almost 700 people “talking about this”. So is it just a social media hype? A feel good story going viral? Or could it be that Dubliners are a little slow to react? What do you think? Let me know in the comments section below.