CHICAGO (CBS) – 121 people commit suicide every day in America, an alarming statistic a Chicago non-profit is trying to drop.
Sip of Hope Coffee Bar in Logan Square is trying to reduce that number below 100 and include coffee as part of their strategy.
All of the proceeds from coffee at Sip of Hope Coffee Bar benefit “Hope for the Day,” a Chicago charity dedicated to mental health and suicide prevention.
“It’s the most underfunded disease out there,” says Jonny Boucher, founder of the charity and coffee shop.
Boucher says he founded the charity after his boss, who he also considered a mentor, became the ninth person he knew to commit suicide.
“If I’m one person impacted, the more we talk about it, the more we know we’re not alone. If we need to ask for help, it’s okay,” says Boucher.
The baristas at the coffee shop are trained to make coffee, but are also certified in mental health first aid.
“We’re here to guide you to the help you need, and smile, and be your friend, and make you good coffee,” says Allison Lawrence, a barista at the shop.
Mental health resources are available inside the front door.
Boucher says the slogan of his shop is clear and the message is posted inside his shop: “It’s okay not to be okay.”
The shop hopes to make a $250,000 profit in the first year. All of the money will be used in Chicago to help people find any option other than suicide.
Sip of Hope Coffee Bar is located at 3039 West Fullerton Avenue in Chicago.