SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine — UPDATE: As of Friday morning, with only two days before the Tri for a Cure, Mike had run 354 miles and had at least 10 more miles to run. He is hoping with a few more orders to double his goal of running 200 miles and make it an even 400 miles in six weeks!!!
We've all 'bean' there, needing a cup of coffee but not being able to run out and grab it. That's where Mike Mwenedata comes in.
Mike said he had seen women training for Maine's most popular and only all-female triathlon and wanted to get involved. Until Sunday, July 14, Mike is selling a limited edition coffee with all the proceeds going to Tri for a Cure.
If you order two or more bags, he will personally deliver them to your home or office. He might be a little sweaty when he gets there, but he says it is a great way to get involved and meet people in his community. If you live outside the 10 mile limit, he will run the coffee delivery to the post office or bike it to your home.
"Everywhere I go I get to know people. Community is a big thing for me," Mike huffs after running a delivery of 15 bags of coffee to Maine Health on Monday morning.
"I never run with this much weight on my back...Usually it's like five bags...so coming up the hill killed me," Mike pants.
Whether it's creating sustainable jobs for farmers in his native Rwanda or helping raise funds to fight cancer in Maine, Mike's actions speak louder than his words.
Mike came to Maine in 2010 and started Rwanda Bean Coffee in 2013. The idea was simple: create good jobs for people in his home country and create a market for their coffee eliminating middle men. Mike works directly with his 800 farmers and pledges to give them 50 percent of his profits.
"My company was founded to support community. That is what inspires me," Mike says with a grin, which is how he says everything.
His goal was to sell 300 bags of coffee and run 200 miles. As of Monday, July 8, Mike had run 315 miles and sold 252 bags of coffee during 87 trips. But that number continues to climb. Mike will continue jogging java to people in the Portland area until the day of the Tri for a Cure, hitting the road for coffee and a cure for cancer.