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Welcome to my blog where I share some of my favorite things from the Midwest cities along Lake Michigan.

Aspire Company:  Together, We're Better

Aspire Company: Together, We're Better

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In today's world, we're bombarded with information and stories on a daily basis.  If you’re on social media, the information can be overwhelming at times.  Oftentimes the stories we hear can be a source of sadness and anxiety.  We may even have to remind ourselves of the good in the world.

During my life, I’ve met some remarkable individuals who made a lasting positive impact on myself and others; people who went out of their way to show kindness and serve others.  The world is full of individuals like that; people who care and find happiness in helping others.  Many times these stories go untold in favor of more sensational news. My goal is to spread the wonderful works of these individuals.

Aspire Coffee Works

I’d learned of Aspire Coffee Works from a fellow blogger who mentioned to me that she'd set aside a day to volunteer with them. She informed me of the work that they do for those with disabilities, and I quickly requested additional information.

 My team members Bruce (left) and Dan

My team members Bruce (left) and Dan

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Growing up, my parents owned two foster care homes for adults with intellectual disabilities.  We lived with the residents in the homes, and they became a part of our extended family, so the Aspire programs are close to my heart.  I was excited when she virtually connected me with them.

The Aspire Coffee Works program is a dynamic partnership between Aspire and Metropolis Coffee Company.  

Aspire
Founded in 1960, Aspire takes the lead in providing unwavering service and support to children and adults with developmental disabilities, their families, and the Chicagoland community.  Their goal is to build inclusive communities in the workplace while demonstrating that individuals with disabilities can be productive and successful members of the workforce.   They serve nearly 1,000 children and adults annually with passion and heart.

Metropolis Coffee Company:  
Recognized as one of the nations top roasters, Metropolis Coffee Company, has a reputation for consistently supplying excellent coffee.  The success of their award-winning coffee is firmly established in their principle belief system.  

Our coffee aesthetic is rooted in the belief that great coffee comes from a line of respect beginning with the farmers and their respect for their land. We, in turn, respect the farmers by paying fair prices for their harvest, and respect our customers by taking great care in the roasting roasting and brewing process. Respect is at the core of our coffee philosophy, and taste is paramount.
— Metropolis Coffee Company

We surely could use more businesses like Metropolis! These two wonderful companies were meant to come together!

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Through the Aspire Coffee Works Program, adults with disabilities on the Aspire Coffee Works team work side by side with employees of Metropolis Coffee Company at the roasting facility in Chicago’s Avondale neighborhood.

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I appreciated getting to know some of the other workers and volunteers during my time there.  Something that stood out during the day was the happy and energetic work environment! I had a great time with my team! Bruce and Dan were good at showing me the ropes and making sure that I did things correctly. Other team members were Tori who’s been helping out at Aspire since 2015 and Julia who’s been with them for a year and a half.
We prepared the coffee packaging, weighed coffee beans, sealed, and labeled the bags in preparation for shipping.  The hardest part of the day for me was mastering the sealer!  Grrrrrr

The consumer upon receipt will know the name of the packager, the date of roast, and batch number.  The best part about Aspire Coffee Works coffee is knowing that 100% of proceeds from the sale of the coffee goes back into the Aspire programs.  I drink a lot of coffee, knowing that I'm making a difference while doing it is a great feeling!  Metropolis coffee is delicious!


Learning about the many success stories that have come from the program truly warms the heart!

 Bridgette's story is one of many success stories from the program

Bridgette's story is one of many success stories from the program

One such story is that of Bridgette.  She was enrolled in Aspires Independent Living program when she’d heard of a job opportunity at Aspire Coffee Works.  Thinking of it as her dream job, she applied and was hired.  She excelled so much after her training that Aspire partner Metropolis hired her exclusively to work on their staff as a production assistant. Bridget is doing everything it takes to live independently and is living proof of the value of programs like Aspire and Aspire Coffee Works.

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You can support Aspire and Aspire Coffee Works in numerous ways.

  • Volunteer
  • Spread the word.  The more people that know about the Aspire programs, the more growth potential for the organization.  It also affords others the privilege of volunteering.
  • Donate
  • Purchase Aspire Coffee Works Coffee; 100% of proceeds go back into the Aspire programs. You can drink amazing Metropolis coffee and help change lives.  I met a couple of businessmen touring the facility who stated that hey supply Aspire Coffee for their office employees.  My family and I are enjoying it at home.  You can purchase it here

I can't wait to volunteer again with Aspire, I had a wonderful time! Please share the word about this organization.  Our support makes a difference!

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