DENVER — Wagon Coffee Roasters is all about second and, occasionally, third chances.
The mission of the small business is to assist women recovering from addiction and alcoholism by hiring and training them to assist in running the business, which is housed in a renovated church near the University of Denver. Women are currently roasting, bagging, and shipping ground coffee and whole beans. By the end of March, the business should be fully operational.
Kavita Darji is the corporate trainer at Wagon Coffee.
“I’m recovering,” she stated. “I’ve been sober for five and a half years. I desired to be a part of something alive, growing, and changing.”
Darji began drinking at the age of 11 and faced a great deal of racism growing up as an immigrant’s child.
“From the start, I desired more to drink and desired to figure out how I could obtain more, have more, and become more inebriated,” Darji explained.
Women in recovery benefit from Wagon Coffee.
For Darji, being a part of Wagon Coffee provides a sense of belonging for her and other women. “Any recovery community’s natural inclination is to have coffee. It is a matter of hospitality. It’s about being hospitable. It’s about sharing something warm and loving with someone and being of service to them.”
Tami Canaday founded the company during the pandemic. She self-identifies as a recovering addict’s loved one. Ryan, her husband, has been clean and sober for nine years.
Canaday credits Wagon Coffee with assisting her in her recovery as the wife of an addict.
“It inspires me tremendously because I see women like Kavita and her passion,” she explained. “There is a great deal of self-inflicted shame involved. Thus, we offer love as frequently as possible to ensure that people truly feel no judgement or shame. You are more than welcome here.”