Becoming a CommuniTEA
It has already been quite a special year for us!
Risky Business - Going Full-time
Starting in January 2017, our founder Pranav made the leap, leaving his consulting job to go full time with Chaigaram. The social enterprise is not just a ‘thing on the side’ anymore, but a full-blown business. A livelihood. A mission.
In line with the motto of “We’re all in this together,” Pranav brought Anuj on board. Bonding over common Indian heritage, the two are the perfect duo to deliver authentic chai to the London food scene. Anuj brings sales and distribution expertise as he has previous experience launching beverage startups. His never-ending motivation to spread the word and win over new accounts has him making the rounds in London cafes, always on the lookout for new stockists.
But how do these two stay on track? Tasks take longer than expected, get lost in ever increasing to-do lists, or are parked until sometime in the never quite definite “future.” That’s why we have Sally. She is the much needed (very positive) kick-in-the-butt that keeps the team focused and motivated.
And finally there is Anna. Anna posts pictures of pancakes on Instagram, and laughs at her own captions. Sometimes she is so proud of her Boomerang videos, that her own views make up 20% of overall traffic.
Chaigaram now has an official headquarters. Situated in the buzzing neighbourhood of Clerkenwell, City University of London has generously welcomed the team to their LaunchLab co-working space. Surrounded by other young entrepreneurs, the team is working day-in and day-out to help refugees make their transition to London life easier.
Growing the Family
Our current focus is to serve fresh chai in more food markets around London, see our chai blends and chai syrup at more independent cafes around the UK, and solidify partnerships with refugee bodies to better scale our social impact.
Already this year, we’ve served tea at 4 TEDx conferences and the Social Impact Careers Conference at the Said Business School in Oxford. We’re at the Venn Street Market in Clapham every Saturday. And finally, you can find our chai in 17 independent cafes.
We have so far worked with 6 refugees from Syria, Eritrea, Iraq, Pakistan, Sudan, and Bangladesh. These team members report that they enjoy selling tea with us because of the opportunity to practise their English language skills, meet all kinds of customers, and earn a fair wage for their work.
We will keep you updated with inspiring stories about our new team members, and let you know how they are getting on. So keep an eye out for future Chaigaram updates and stories on how everything is going. Until next time!