RENEW Strategies

RENEW Stories of 2014: Part One

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Emily Ziethen
| January 28, 2015

Built through laughter and heartache, challenges and great opportunity, stories capture the substance of life. The key actors in our story are the investors, entrepreneurs, development partners, colleagues, friends and family members who make RENEW and the Impact Angel Network (IAN) what it is today. In gratitude, we thought we’d take a few moments to recount some of our favorite stories from 2014.

One of our favorite moments from 2014 is the day that Laura and Matt decided to visit the METAD coffee farm. In Laura’s own words:

“Mud and rain are really not my favorite things,
but the image in my memory is epic: kids using banana leaves as umbrellas, trucks stuck up to their axles in mud, and Matt covered head to toe. I fled our land cruiser and rushed through the rain towards the welcoming arms of a young villager woman, and I sheltered under the porch of her mud brick and thatched hut. We were hours away from any semblance of modernity. Whose idea was it to visit our coffee farm near Yirgacheffe in the middle of the rainy season anyway?

OK, I’ll admit it, it was mine – the desire to escape the city and go to that magical, mystical, ‘jungle-y’ place got the better of me. We didn’t make it to the actual farm on that trip, but ‘Ethiopia the beautiful’ renewed me once more and the jilted, jumbled conversations with the villagers gave me images of the impact of our investment: the hundreds of laborers who we employ at the farm and processing site, and the children who go to the school supported by METAD. These faces make up the real stories.”

P.S. – Have no fear METAD investors, our team did make it to the farm to check up on things a few weeks later.

Contact us at or follow us on Twitter @RENEWLLC to find out more.