It’s not too latte for a caring cup from Tiki

Tiki's owner Amy Michie with baristas Saul Brehme and Callum Michie.
Tiki's owner Amy Michie with baristas Saul Brehme and Callum Michie.

An independent cafe which promotes helping those in need through offering ‘suspended’ coffees says its customers’ generosity is still going unnoticed.

Tiki’s in Marlowes introduced the American concept – which involves paying for an extra drink which can be claimed free by someone less fortunate – in October, and the trend has been embraced by loyal coffee-sipping customers.

However, the same cannot be said for the homeless and struggling people the scheme is designed to help, and the tally of suspended coffees on the store’s blackboard has rocketed to more than 100.

Tiki’s owner 24-year-old Amy Michie and her staff believe the reason the caring cuppas aren’t being claimed is due to a lack of awareness about the idea, and perhaps even pride.

Amy said: “We just need to let people know that they can come through the door, as some people might be embarrassed by it.

“I have been surprised by the take-up from customers, it is amazing how generous people can be. It’s just a shame people aren’t getting the benefits.”

The cafe is now working with Dacorum homelessness charity DENS – which also operates a voucher scheme for homeless people at Tiki’s – to promote the cause.

Barista Saul Brehme said: “Over Christmas people were really generous with the scheme, but I believe that not enough people know about it. You don’t get people coming in wanting a coffee without the money to pay for it, but we want to let struggling people know they can come in and ask.”