Generous Coffee Grew From A Trip To Central America And A Passion To Help Others

May 10, 2024 at 7:52 p.m.
Generous Coffee owners Tyler Silveus (L) and Ben Higgins (R) talk about why they moved the business from Buffalo Street to 121 W. Center St., Warsaw, during an interview Friday. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
Generous Coffee owners Tyler Silveus (L) and Ben Higgins (R) talk about why they moved the business from Buffalo Street to 121 W. Center St., Warsaw, during an interview Friday. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union

By DAVID L. SLONE Managing Editor

The seed for Generous Coffee Co. sprouted from a church trip to Central America over a decade ago.
In the last seven years, it’s donated approximately $200,000 to over 20 nonprofits.
Friday, Generous Coffee had a ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce for its new location at 121 W. Center St., moving from 123 S. Buffalo St., Warsaw. A grand opening is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 11.
Ben Higgins - a Warsaw Community High School graduate, star of the 20th season of “The Bachelor,” I Heart Radio host and author of the book “Alone in Plain Sight” - is one of the owners of Generous Coffee.
In an interview Friday before the ribbon-cutting, he said that in 2011, Warsaw Community Church went to Central America and on that trip, a few friends of his felt a passion for the people there and to help try to alleviate poverty.

    The Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce had a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday for Generous Coffee and their new location at 121 W. Center St., Warsaw. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

“So we came back and that’s where Humanity & Hope United started, which is a nonprofit started by Riley Fuller, and Jordan Fuller now runs it with him,” Higgins said. “Long story short, after my time on ‘The Bachelor,’ with still having the passion for Central America and to alleviate poverty, Riley, Drew Scholl and myself got together and we had this idea that we could start a for-profit business, sell a product - we didn’t know at the time what it would be - and donate 100% of the profits to nonprofits.”
They eventually fell in love with coffee.
“Fast forward to today, Riley and Drew are supporters but they’re no longer involved. And Tyler (Silveus) and myself now own Generous and we have the same model. So we sell specialty grade coffee - both retail and wholesale - and then we donate 100% of the profits to nonprofits,” Higgins said. “So it’s a passion project for Tyler and myself, and the best way to explain Generous is it’s a fundraising engine for organizations doing incredible work around the world.”
For this next quarter, Generous will be supporting four local organizations - CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates), the Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts, Baker Youth Club and Cardinal Services.

    The bags of coffee that can be purchased at Generous Coffee highlight the nonprofits that 100% of the proceeds from the sale of the coffee will go toward. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

“In the past, we’ve supported organizations that have done clean water, called One at a Time. Ones that supported mental health and loneliness within schools and with adults, which is called Only Seven Seconds. And then Love One, which is an orphange in Rwanda, and Brace for Impact, which does healthcare and education in Haiti,” Higgins said.
The difference between Generous Coffee’s new location on Center Street and the former place is the set-up, he said.
“The other building is fantastic, but it was one big open space, so you walk in and it’s extremely high ceilings, big open space, exposed brick walls, and it really didn’t accommodate the public well because they were going to be kind of sitting on top of where we were going to be doing all of our work,” Higgins said. “This allows us a space in front for people to gather, to hang out, to work, to meet, to talk while we get to do everything back here. Now, they can come back here and sit. These couches are open to the public to sit on and hang out on, but it really kind of separates where we’re at and gives the public a space to hang out.”
Speaking on why they wanted to move, Silveus said, “One of the biggest reasons was we needed a concrete floor and an overhead door. We’re moving 4,500-pound pallets around and it was tough getting it through the doors at the other place. The other reason was, this space set up better for commercial roasting than the other did. It had a front and back so that we could kind of do both. And then Fellowship (Missions) had some really cool ideas for that (Buffalo Street) building, it’s going to meet some needs for them, so we’re excited to put all three of those together.”
Higgins said they really wanted to stay in downtown Warsaw.
“Tyler and I both are very focused on staying downtown because we think downtown Warsaw is in one of the coolest places it’s been in 20 years,” he said.

    The coffee roaster is in the back of Generous Coffee’s new location at 121 W. Center St., Warsaw. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

Silveus said, “You can’t get a building like it’s got any character if you’re outside downtown really. The age and the aesthetics of these buildings are just amazing.”
Higgins, who lives in Denver, Colo., said the buildings are cool and he comes back to Warsaw quite a bit now. “I think downtown Warsaw is an amazing place and I think it’s only going to get better,” he stated.
Generous Coffee isn’t what one might consider a typical coffee shop.
“We want to have a space that’s open to the public. We will put our coffee on. So you can come here and have a regular cup of coffee. We’re going to do it donation based, so we’re going to be constantly moving around to the different local nonprofits, so this month the coffee donations will go to” the nonprofits, Silveus said.
He said there’s great coffee shops in downtown Warsaw. “The River recently came on as a client, so they’re going to be the place that we direct people to if they want to get a real coffee drink, with Generous Coffee just right down the street. But there’s really not a lot of place in the downtown area to just hang out and have soft seating and whether you want to have a meeting or study or whatever. We want to provide (that) and see what this space will get used for - that’s the fun part. We really don’t know what it’s going to get used for. We’re going to let the community kind of tell us what this space should be used for, and that’s exciting for us to discover that, along with everybody else,” Silveus explained.
Hours for Generous Coffee are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
“We will be here roasting, packaging, shipping. We’ll have a light on and coffee out,” Silveus said, adding that their hours may overlap with Living in Transition Effectively’s (LITE’s).
Higgins said, “There’s going to be a neon light upfront. When that is on, that means we are here. So there could be days that it’s not 9 to 1 but somebody has to come in and work and we just turn on the lights so people can just come in and hang out. But that’s upfront. So, if it’s on, come on in.”
There also will be a retail shop in the front.
“You can buy bags of coffee. You can subscribe to coffee, if you’re local and pick it up with no shipping costs from the lockers upfront. You can buy apparel here. So there will be a little store, but as Tyler mentioned, we really want to point people to go to the local coffee shops, especially The River because they will be serving Generous,” Higgins stated.
Warsaw is Generous Coffee’s only location, but they have multiple locations serving Generous Coffee.
“So we have a lot of coffee shops, businesses that are serving Generous, churches, and obviously households, but this is the only place that’s branded Generous, that is operated by Generous,” Higgins said.
He said they hope to grow Generous Coffee.
“We believe that if we have a place that we can roast from, then maybe more businesses will start serving Generous in our local community,” Higgins said. “Tyler and I, when we strategically placed it here, the idea is that we’ll grow from here. This will always be in Warsaw, it’ll be our place, but I think the Midwest and Central Indiana is a place to grow from and spread out from.”
They are doing a lot of coffee across the country. It comes from places in Honduras, Brazil, Rwanda, Colombia, Ethiopia and Mexico.
“We have it from all over the world, and it’s all specialty grade coffee. So, coffee is graded on a scale of 1 to 100, and our coffee is our specialty graded, meaning it has to be above an 85, so we are doing the best coffee that you can get in the world, craft-roasted here,” he said.
For anyone interested in adding Generous Coffee to their offerings, email [email protected].
“I think one of the coolest things that we can do for businesses right now, depending on scale, depending what they’re about, is we love to partner in gifting programs. So, if you’re a real estate agent, mortgage broker, financial advisor, a bank, whatever it is and you have clientele, you can actually design your own coffee bag,” Higgins said. “So we can help you design a coffee bag, we’ll package it, ship it for you or we’ll just package it and bring it to you if you’re here in town. But we’re really excited about our ability to customize coffee offering.”

The seed for Generous Coffee Co. sprouted from a church trip to Central America over a decade ago.
In the last seven years, it’s donated approximately $200,000 to over 20 nonprofits.
Friday, Generous Coffee had a ribbon-cutting ceremony with the Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce for its new location at 121 W. Center St., moving from 123 S. Buffalo St., Warsaw. A grand opening is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, May 11.
Ben Higgins - a Warsaw Community High School graduate, star of the 20th season of “The Bachelor,” I Heart Radio host and author of the book “Alone in Plain Sight” - is one of the owners of Generous Coffee.
In an interview Friday before the ribbon-cutting, he said that in 2011, Warsaw Community Church went to Central America and on that trip, a few friends of his felt a passion for the people there and to help try to alleviate poverty.

    The Kosciusko Chamber of Commerce had a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday for Generous Coffee and their new location at 121 W. Center St., Warsaw. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

“So we came back and that’s where Humanity & Hope United started, which is a nonprofit started by Riley Fuller, and Jordan Fuller now runs it with him,” Higgins said. “Long story short, after my time on ‘The Bachelor,’ with still having the passion for Central America and to alleviate poverty, Riley, Drew Scholl and myself got together and we had this idea that we could start a for-profit business, sell a product - we didn’t know at the time what it would be - and donate 100% of the profits to nonprofits.”
They eventually fell in love with coffee.
“Fast forward to today, Riley and Drew are supporters but they’re no longer involved. And Tyler (Silveus) and myself now own Generous and we have the same model. So we sell specialty grade coffee - both retail and wholesale - and then we donate 100% of the profits to nonprofits,” Higgins said. “So it’s a passion project for Tyler and myself, and the best way to explain Generous is it’s a fundraising engine for organizations doing incredible work around the world.”
For this next quarter, Generous will be supporting four local organizations - CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates), the Wagon Wheel Center for the Arts, Baker Youth Club and Cardinal Services.

    The bags of coffee that can be purchased at Generous Coffee highlight the nonprofits that 100% of the proceeds from the sale of the coffee will go toward. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

“In the past, we’ve supported organizations that have done clean water, called One at a Time. Ones that supported mental health and loneliness within schools and with adults, which is called Only Seven Seconds. And then Love One, which is an orphange in Rwanda, and Brace for Impact, which does healthcare and education in Haiti,” Higgins said.
The difference between Generous Coffee’s new location on Center Street and the former place is the set-up, he said.
“The other building is fantastic, but it was one big open space, so you walk in and it’s extremely high ceilings, big open space, exposed brick walls, and it really didn’t accommodate the public well because they were going to be kind of sitting on top of where we were going to be doing all of our work,” Higgins said. “This allows us a space in front for people to gather, to hang out, to work, to meet, to talk while we get to do everything back here. Now, they can come back here and sit. These couches are open to the public to sit on and hang out on, but it really kind of separates where we’re at and gives the public a space to hang out.”
Speaking on why they wanted to move, Silveus said, “One of the biggest reasons was we needed a concrete floor and an overhead door. We’re moving 4,500-pound pallets around and it was tough getting it through the doors at the other place. The other reason was, this space set up better for commercial roasting than the other did. It had a front and back so that we could kind of do both. And then Fellowship (Missions) had some really cool ideas for that (Buffalo Street) building, it’s going to meet some needs for them, so we’re excited to put all three of those together.”
Higgins said they really wanted to stay in downtown Warsaw.
“Tyler and I both are very focused on staying downtown because we think downtown Warsaw is in one of the coolest places it’s been in 20 years,” he said.

    The coffee roaster is in the back of Generous Coffee’s new location at 121 W. Center St., Warsaw. Photo by David Slone, Times-Union
 
 

Silveus said, “You can’t get a building like it’s got any character if you’re outside downtown really. The age and the aesthetics of these buildings are just amazing.”
Higgins, who lives in Denver, Colo., said the buildings are cool and he comes back to Warsaw quite a bit now. “I think downtown Warsaw is an amazing place and I think it’s only going to get better,” he stated.
Generous Coffee isn’t what one might consider a typical coffee shop.
“We want to have a space that’s open to the public. We will put our coffee on. So you can come here and have a regular cup of coffee. We’re going to do it donation based, so we’re going to be constantly moving around to the different local nonprofits, so this month the coffee donations will go to” the nonprofits, Silveus said.
He said there’s great coffee shops in downtown Warsaw. “The River recently came on as a client, so they’re going to be the place that we direct people to if they want to get a real coffee drink, with Generous Coffee just right down the street. But there’s really not a lot of place in the downtown area to just hang out and have soft seating and whether you want to have a meeting or study or whatever. We want to provide (that) and see what this space will get used for - that’s the fun part. We really don’t know what it’s going to get used for. We’re going to let the community kind of tell us what this space should be used for, and that’s exciting for us to discover that, along with everybody else,” Silveus explained.
Hours for Generous Coffee are 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.
“We will be here roasting, packaging, shipping. We’ll have a light on and coffee out,” Silveus said, adding that their hours may overlap with Living in Transition Effectively’s (LITE’s).
Higgins said, “There’s going to be a neon light upfront. When that is on, that means we are here. So there could be days that it’s not 9 to 1 but somebody has to come in and work and we just turn on the lights so people can just come in and hang out. But that’s upfront. So, if it’s on, come on in.”
There also will be a retail shop in the front.
“You can buy bags of coffee. You can subscribe to coffee, if you’re local and pick it up with no shipping costs from the lockers upfront. You can buy apparel here. So there will be a little store, but as Tyler mentioned, we really want to point people to go to the local coffee shops, especially The River because they will be serving Generous,” Higgins stated.
Warsaw is Generous Coffee’s only location, but they have multiple locations serving Generous Coffee.
“So we have a lot of coffee shops, businesses that are serving Generous, churches, and obviously households, but this is the only place that’s branded Generous, that is operated by Generous,” Higgins said.
He said they hope to grow Generous Coffee.
“We believe that if we have a place that we can roast from, then maybe more businesses will start serving Generous in our local community,” Higgins said. “Tyler and I, when we strategically placed it here, the idea is that we’ll grow from here. This will always be in Warsaw, it’ll be our place, but I think the Midwest and Central Indiana is a place to grow from and spread out from.”
They are doing a lot of coffee across the country. It comes from places in Honduras, Brazil, Rwanda, Colombia, Ethiopia and Mexico.
“We have it from all over the world, and it’s all specialty grade coffee. So, coffee is graded on a scale of 1 to 100, and our coffee is our specialty graded, meaning it has to be above an 85, so we are doing the best coffee that you can get in the world, craft-roasted here,” he said.
For anyone interested in adding Generous Coffee to their offerings, email [email protected].
“I think one of the coolest things that we can do for businesses right now, depending on scale, depending what they’re about, is we love to partner in gifting programs. So, if you’re a real estate agent, mortgage broker, financial advisor, a bank, whatever it is and you have clientele, you can actually design your own coffee bag,” Higgins said. “So we can help you design a coffee bag, we’ll package it, ship it for you or we’ll just package it and bring it to you if you’re here in town. But we’re really excited about our ability to customize coffee offering.”

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