providing space for renewal, community and development in under-resourced neighborhoods with one great cup of coffee at a time

River West Coffee
Indianapolis, Indiana
In a group of four under-resourced neighborhoods on the near west side of Indianapolis, there is not one coffee shop. There is no place where community members can go to meet with one another and relax over a cup of their favorite espresso or tea.  There is no place for students to hang out, process life, access free wi-fi and be mentored by a life coach.  There isn’t a neutral ground where business people and developers can meet to broker deals.  The community is missing out on all the benefits a neighborhood coffee house brings by the nature of its business and the calming atmosphere it provides. 
 
The solution is to open a coffee house in the center of these neighborhoods that would bring not only quality products and service to the community, but would be incorporated into the life of the community.  This would happen as youth are invited to participate in the design and planning of the shop and trained in life skills like building relationships, working a job, and believing in something greater than themselves. The neighborhood coffee house would bring a multitude of new opportunities to the near west side including:

  • Provide a place for youth to access free wi-fi, meet with mentors, and receive free tutoring from IUPUI student volunteers.
  • Be a place where all are welcome, and bridges can be built between the new members coming into the community and the ones who have been there.
  • Offer youth a venue to display their musical and artistic talents.
  • Provide meeting space for local businesses, community leaders and developers to broker deals.
  • Provide space to bring life and celebration into the community.
  • And, most of all, providing excellent coffee drinks in an atmosphere of joy, peace and renewal.

The mission of River West Coffee and Tea is to serve an underdeveloped community through a coffee shop.  We are committed to serving a quality product in a safe environment for all; and training, and developing as many students as we are able to along the way.  This is an area where the opioid crisis is real and where too many youth lack hope.  River West Coffee will provide space for our fellow youth workers to mentor students, help them identify what their purpose is, encourage them to trust God for a greater story for their lives than they can imagine.  All of this will be accomplished through a coffee house-a space that is currently not available.

ABOUT BO AND MARCIA
Residents of the River West community, Bo and Marcia have over 35 years of working with and discipling youth through the ministry of Cru, High School and their local church.  During that time, they helped start Cru High School in the cities of Bucharest and Timisoara, Romania.  Marcia was instrumental in developing the international projects department with Cru High School, seeing it grow from one trip to one country to over 20 opportunities to as many countries in a period of 4 years.  Bo is a gifted people developer and was instrumental in the promotion of many of his direct reports during his tenure with one of the largest shipping companies in the US.  Both Bo and Marcia are gifted in hospitality and resourcing others to reach their God-given potential.  They are currently the owners and operators of River West Coffee and Tea, a mobile espresso bar, as they refine their talents as baristas, business owners, and prepare for the transition to a brick and mortar location.

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Marcia Zgirta

Co-founder
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Bo Zgirta

Co-founder

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