Coffee with a cause

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE For Further Information contact:
Dan Davidson
Phone: (626) 817-3461
Rosebud Coffee and its parent Rose City Coffee trains and hires homeless
and transitional-aged youth as baristas
On Monday, Oct. 9, a coffee shop that improves the lives of down-and-out
Pasadena residents, while serving top-notch craft coffee, teas, pastries and
sandwiches, will open its doors to the public.
Rosebud Coffee, 2302 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107, is the
only cafe in the city that exclusively hires formerly homeless people and
transitional-aged youth to work in its shop as baristas.
This first-of-its-kind cafe also sources its coffee beans and food items from
local businesses and nonprofits that regularly give back to the community.
“Your cup of coffee is providing the opportunity to change the life of a
formerly homeless or transitional-aged youth,” said Dan Davidson, founder of
Rosebud Coffee and lead pastor at Rose City Church.
“I would say your coffee has a cause,” he said.
The idea for Rosebud Coffee arose six years ago when Davidson and his
wife, Samantha, reopened a shuttered, historic church building on Del Mar
Boulevard and Allen Avenue in Pasadena.
Rosebud Coffee – 2302 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91107 – 626-792-1341 –
The church, rented out for four years, had attracted homeless youth who
were living in the parking lot. Davidson began providing food, clothing and
shelter. Soon, the church grounds turned into a mini tent city – to the dismay of
neighbors. The young pastor and his wife, also an ordained minister, realized
they needed help. So they contacted nonprofits such as Pacific Clinics, Journey
House, LA Youth Network and Youth Moving On for wrap-around services such
as counseling, shelters and permanent housing.
When Dan Davidson noticed the previous pastor had purchased a mobile
coffee cart for use at nearby Pasadena City College, he and a friend of his, Brett
Prior, had a unique idea: Use the coffee cart to help the homeless gain a skill.
Rose City Church repurposed its coffee cart as a training ground for homeless
youth to learn the art of creating specialty coffee beverages. The rigorous
program qualified graduates for jobs in the burgeoning LA coffee scene.
Rose City Coffee, a nonprofit, has trained 15 homeless or transitional-aged
youth. And the brick-and-mortar store on Colorado Boulevard, just west of Sierra
Madre Avenue, is the next rung in a philanthropic enterprise that addresses the
growing homeless problem in Los Angeles County with a combination of
compassion and practicality.
“The youth that come through our program gain confidence, but even
deeper, a sense of self-worth,” Davidson said. “It’s because they know they have
something to offer and it is offered within relationships from people who love
them deeply.”
One of those who graduated was Norma Lathan, 24, who bounced from
foster home to foster home her whole life, ending up on the street.
With a recommendation from Youth Moving On, which had supplied her
with a place to live and spending money, Lathan began training at Rose City
Coffee in February. Upon completion in June, she landed a job at a Starbucks
Rosebud Coffee – 2302 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91107 – 626-792-1341 –
“It (training) was so that I can have something to put on my resume. But
then I got a job. I am a barista at Starbucks. I’ve worked there ever since I
graduated (from the program),” said Lathan, who is studying biology at Citrus
College. She hopes to work in the medical field.
Rosebud Coffee is a large space that will be open to community groups
such as book clubs and service organizations for meetings.
“We want it to be a space for the community to gather. One of our key
values is the development of community and supporting community,” Davidson
said. “So bring a friend.”
Rosebud Coffee buys its coffee beans from Wild Goose Coffee Roasters,
which donates 10 pounds of food to a local food bank for every pound of coffee
purchased. Pasadena-based Hope Catering, which continues to hire homeless
and those recently released from incarceration, provides sandwiches, salads and
The cafe was designed by Matt Lunn of Gensler, the L.A.-based
architectural firm and his wife, Kerry Bogus of Commune Design. Both donated
their time and services. Rosebud Coffee is sharing the space with Chirp, a kids
karaoke and birthday party business.
Rosebud Coffee hours are: M-Fri, 7 a.m.-5 p.m; Sat: 7 a.m.-11 a.m.
Sunday: Closed.
Ample parking is available in a spacious lot behind the store off Roosevelt
Avenue, as well as street parking on Colorado Boulevard.
Photos are provided upon request. For more information, go to
Coffee – 2302 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91107 – 626-792-1341 – www.roseb

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