How we work

Our mission is to improve the life chances of boys and girls in coffee growing communities by providing the opportunity of a safe, quality education and our vision is to eradicate poverty in coffee growing communities.

How we make a difference

  • Building new schools or extending existing ones
  • Furnishing the new buildings
  • Investing in water supplies
  • Providing electricity
  • Providing computers
  • Developing land for families to grow crops
  • Building teacher accommodation
  • Building latrines

Our Partners

The Costa Foundation could not change lives without our delivery partners. We work with each of our partners very closely to deliver against our promises on every single project. We supply the means, but our partners make it happen.

Our Costa Foundation store Champions

Inside our Costa Coffee stores we have Costa Foundation store champions. Alongside their daily job they help fundraise for our charity. You may see some of the activities that they do on the last Friday of each month, the “Foundation Friday”.

Our Team

A very special group of people, most of whom have other ‘day jobs’, make up the Costa Foundation team. Whether a trustee, a volunteer or a core team member, each and every one of these people has helped to change lives.

If you have any questions that are not answered here, please get in touch.

I want to say a big thank you to Costa for building me this beautiful school with so many things to learn and play with!

Frequently Asked Questions

The Costa Foundation is funded through a number of mechanisms:

  • Direct annual donation from Costa
  • Match-funding by Costa Coffee
  • Costa Coffee customer donations via collection boxes
  • Store fundraising activities
  • Individual team member fundraising outside of stores (i.e. sponsored walks)
  • Adhoc customer donations
  • Payroll Giving contributions
  • Cause related marketing activity
  • Digital giving via SMS and website
  • Donations from partner organisations and suppliers
  • Annual national centrally driven campaigns

One of the charity’s strategic goals is that every school or school project we have funded becomes sustainable and able to stand on its own two feet within five years of our initial investment.

As such, the Costa Foundation does not pay for teacher’s salaries in the schools that it has funded as this is simply not sustainable. Instead, we have agreements with the local education authorities that they will fund the provision and training of teachers for the life of the school. The only exception to this model is PEAS schools in Uganda and Zambia where the teachers are funded by PEAS.

We have a ‘grant-application’ process meaning that our partners have to apply for grants for new schools and school projects. This application process is also there to provide additional resources for existing projects and has no time limit – thus ensuring the long-term sustainability of the projects.

Examples of such grants are:

  • Colombia – extension of Anatoli School to provide kindergarten and primary school facilities including canteen and new playground. This happened eight years after the initial school build
  • Uganda – all 12 of our Ugandan and Zambian high schools have been expanded since they were initially built, including classrooms, boarding accommodation, teacher’s accommodation and water storage tanks
  • Vietnam – expansion of 4 of our nursery schools due to increasing numbers of children, specifically at Eatar Nursery School, Cu Kuin Nursery School, Cu Pang Nursery School and Hoa Dong Nursery School occurred within four years of the initial schools being constructed

The Costa Foundation works closely with a number of delivery partners all of whom have a close relationship with the co-operatives, local authorities, governments and communities in the countries we support. The decision-making process is based on the following criteria:

  • Identifying a real need in terms of education
  • Must be in coffee growing communities
  • Identifying a strong partner to support the delivery of the project in the countries we support

The Costa Foundation has supported over 90 school projects in 10 countries around the world. Children are currently benefitting from Costa Foundation funded facilities in Colombia, Costa Rica, Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Peru, Uganda and Vietnam and Zambia.  A proportion of raised funds are used to administer the charity and pay the salaries of team members.

We work closely with our delivery partners who have long-term relationships with the Non-Government Organisations, government, regional and local authorities, co-operatives and the communities. It is the delivery partners who are ultimately responsible for the day-to-day project management in the countries we are supporting.

Regular project updates are provided and there is a robust auditing process in place to evaluate and measure progress. The staged release of funds is based on achieving agreed project targets. Delivery partners are audited by the Costa Foundation annually to verify budgets, invoices and payments are accurate.

Costa Foundation accounts are independently verified to ensure transparency of payments direct to the projects at source.

School systems in other countries may have issues, but because the Costa Foundation focuses solely on areas where coffee is grown, we do not support projects outside of those regions. These remote, rural coffee growing areas require more urgent charity support - for example, only one in four children in Uganda has access to a high school education.  

Not usually. Before starting a school project the Costa Foundation agrees with the government and local education authorities that they will fund the training and provision of teachers for the life of the school, in return for the Costa Foundation providing the capital to build the infrastructure. So, in effect, the schools are handed over to the government upon completion. There are a few exceptions to this, for example, PEAS schools in Uganda and Zambia.

A theory of change shows how and why an intervention causes change in a certain context. It maps how our project activities lead to our desired impacts. Click on View diagram  to see  how our activities lead to the impact to which we aspire in our mission statement. View diagram 

If you have any questions that aren't answered here, please get in contact.