Kao Jai Fund: Your Mountain is Waiting

Kao Jai Fund

 “You're off to Great Places! Today is your day! 

Your mountain is waiting, So... get on your way!”        

  ― Dr. Seuss,

One of the many reasons I am so excited to start Kao Jai Coffee is for the Kao Jai Fund. $1 from each purchase will provide an opportunity for someone to feel the fulfillment, love and understanding that service has brought to my life.

I began to truly understand the value of service while volunteering with a home repair organization in the mountains of Central Appalachia, which is a culture much different than my suburban Baltimore home. 

Every day that week I arrived at the family's home early in the morning and worked until late in the evening. Not knowing a lot about construction left a lot of time for me to bond with the family we were serving. Learning about construction was definitely worthwhile, but sitting with the family and listening to stories about the local culture was much more powerful.

Before the trip I did not understand how someone could fall into “the cycle of poverty.” I heard people say it’s because they’re lazy or it’s because they don’t work hard enough. Many people questioned why they didn’t move away from their hometown to a place with more opportunities.

Everyone has the right to their own opinion, but it’s not until we live in community and experience someone else’s reality that we are able to value a person for who they are and their unique story. Sitting on the couch of a homeowner who was proud of the home her great-grandfather built many years ago made it clear why she couldn't just move away. For the first time in my life I got it. I understood that we all must serve others to truly kao jai (understand) and appreciate.

Taking a leap of faith and stepping out of your comfort zone to try something new by going on a service trip can be a financial burden. The Kao Jai Fund was created to give financial support to those seeking to serve others domestically. To learn more about what types of projects we support, visit our Kao Jai Fund page.

Please share this with those interested in taking a leap of faith to better understand others. The application opens on March 21st.

“Your mountain is waiting,

So...get on your way!”

Megan Armstrong