Caribou Coffee to Help Defer Elementary Student Council

The coffee shop is donating 10 percent of its profits to Defer's student council, who is holding a fundraiser to send coffee, hard candy and other supplies to overseas soldiers.

In Grosse Pointe, provides a not-so-typical illustration of a national company that puts community nearly on par with profits.

In the Village, is thought of as a comfortable gathering spot, often the location of choice for committee meetings and regularly offers up a percentage of its proceeds to local schools.

When store manager Vicky Valente received a call from teacher Molly Collins, she couldn’t resist the temptation to help and even add to the idea.

A well-known national coffee company, Caribou has more than 500 locations but allows store managers to make decisions about community involvement. For larger commitments, a regional manager makes the request to the corporate office.

“We are a people-first company, making customer service and community needs the number one goal,” said Valente. “I have a lot of freedom to grant support to local non-profits and even encourage our employees to make Caribou important to the community.”

Defer’s student council created a program to send holiday letters, cards and pictures as well as a coin donation campaign to buy coffee beans and supplies for members of the military that are deployed overseas.

The idea began as a way in the Air National Guard in Afghanistan with the 107th Red Devils Fighter Squadron.

“Apparently coffee is a favorite request from service men and women while they are away from home,” said Collins. “We were thrilled to hear that Caribou would support this cause by offering Defer families a discount on coffee beans this weekend and even more surprised to hear they would donate proceeds as well.”

That’s right, Caribou is not only offering Defer families a $2 per pound discount on bags of coffee beans that will be donated and shipped overseas, but is also contributing 10 percent of all proceeds from Oct. 21 and 22 to Defer so that additional supplies, like hard candy, and shipping costs are covered.

“The Defer community is so grateful for Caribou’s generosity and support of our project,” said Collins. “It is so nice to have a local business step up and support local schools for such a great cause.”

According to Valente, that is how Caribou prefers to do business.

“The commitment level at this store is more than 150 percent,” said Valente. “I was especially touched when a Defer mom and wife of a deployed officer called to say thank you and it made me realize the impact this promotion was going to have to men and women serving our country.”


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