In the latest example of socially responsible lattes, Siem Reap NGO Cambodia Orphan Fund has set up a café in The Lane, next to Miss Wong. This comes on the heels of the reopening of Joe-to-Go coffee shop near the Old Market, which benefits the Global Child NGO.
Cambodia Orphan Fund’s java spot, called the COFfee House, opened its doors on March 12 with a well-attended sangria-fuelled party. In attendance were the NGO’s staff, volunteers, supporters and random wanderers who stopped by to check out the scene. Many of the orphans who will benefit from the NGO’s newest venture were also in the house.
Cambodia Orphan Fund marketing director John Palfrey explained how he serendipitously found the shop house in The Lane.
“I was wandering around after getting lunch and saw the place for rent. Turns out it backs into Temple Bar, so no one would ever want to live there. We walked in and were able to strike a favourable deal quite quickly,” said Palfrey.
He said the NGO has also moved its offices from the orphanage to the upper storeys of the shop house.
Palfrey said he hopes the COFfee House will fill a void in Siem Reap’s café scene. “There’s nowhere to listen to chill-out music with quality sandwiches and good coffee, especially once Blue Pumpkin closes.”
The Euro-style café serves Illy coffee and sandwiches with Italian-inspired ingredients like fresh mozzarella. Beer lovers can quaff gourmet brews like Erdinger and Leffe Brown, while oenophiles can sip a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc or an Argentine Malbec.
The booze isn’t cheap ($5 for an Erdinger), but one can sip contentedly knowing that 100 percent of the proceeds will support the Cambodia Orphan Fund.