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Jacob’s Brew is a coffee shop with a big heart!

Updated: Nov 15, 2023

We visited Jacob’s Brew to have a taste of their food. We discovered the long and remarkable journey of Jacob and his family.

It is not an overstatement to say that Jacob’s Brew has touched the lives of many. Through Jacob’s personal life story, Jacob’s Brew has embarked on a social enterprise concept which seeks to help those in difficult times.

OMGFoodMalta visited Jacob’s Brew to enjoy the food, particularly the scones, but not only! We sat down to talk to Sarah Cachia, Jacob’s mother, about why Jacob’s Brew opened and what makes Jacob’s Brew a social enterprise.

We also loved the fact that it is dog-friendly so obviously Argo joined us and he even took a photo with Jacob!

Jacob's Brew Cafe entrance

How Jacob’s Brew started

Early 2013, Jacob had an unfortunate turn of events and found himself in ITU battling a brain infection with a 50/50 survival rate. His family feared the worst but Jacob came out of it making much better progress than originally anticipated.

What is truly remarkable is that Jacob and his family did not let the multitude of Jacob’s surgeries hold him back from making a strong contribution to society and achieving his own personal dreams. After four surgeries in 2013, Jacob went straight ahead and sat for his Matsec O Level examinations.

Jacob's Brew Cafe Jacob with Charlene and Argo

Unfortunately, the trauma did not stop there. In 2016, Jacob found himself back in ITU having to go through another serious surgery on his brain due to a case of chronic sinusitis. He eventually recovered. Whilst others would react by holding back from making any major life decisions, Jacob’s parents took the latest events as a sign that they needed to fulfill Jacob’s dream of opening a cafeteria.

They decided to get a property which Jacob had spotted in Marsascala before his diagnosis in 2016. Sarah Cachia, Jacob’s mum, admitted that there were many question marks with how they could get Jacob’s Brew up and running, mainly financial. Their first challenge was getting a loan from the bank. The bank loved the social enterprise business plan and granted them a loan.

Jacob's Brew Cafe

The property was severely neglected and needed extensive renovation works, including the entire replacement of plumbing and electricity. One day while Jacob’s family were cleaning out the Marsascala property. Whilst figuring out their next steps to refurbish the property into a cafeteria, they were approached by two business partners, Erskine Vella and Chris Attard from Best Deal Properties, who expressed their desire to help out.

Faith in humanity is restored

They did not only offer to help out with their extensive list of contacts. When Sarah asked how much this whole project would cost, they simply replied “leave it with us”. Sarah and her husband were pleasantly surprised.

Jacob's Brew Cafe

They knew expenses would exceed €25,000 and this was without taking into consideration any additional furniture and applications. Jacob’s Brew was given a complete makeover and opened its doors on the 28th July 2017. In the absences of such kindness, Sarah told us perhaps Jacob’s Brew wouldn’t be open today.

Jacob's Brew Cafe Charlene enjoying a scone

It’s been over four years since Jacob’s Brew welcomed its first customers. Jacob and his family are true to their word in ensuring that this social enterprise helps families and people who are facing difficult moments in their lives. Jacob’s story is heart-warming and one of courage.

Not only did Jacob and his family go through this traumatic period in their lives, they also recognized many shortages in society of today. Instead of putting them to the side and moving on, Jacob and his family decided to find solutions for this problem, not only for themselves, but for any other family in Malta struggling the same situations. Who better to know what these families would need than a family who have been in the same situation?

The ‘Pay it forward’ concept

Possibly the most common phrase you’d hear in association with Jacob’s Brew. The whole concept revolves around the ‘pay it forward’ concept. The idea is simple. Sarah believes that every person has either suffered a difficult period or knows someone who has.

Jacob's Brew Cafe Charlene offering toast

Every time you decide to eat at Jacob’s Brew, you can have the receipt stamped with a PAY IT FORWARD mark which encourages you to forward the receipt to someone who is going through a difficult time. They can then come visit and eat at Jacob’s Brew on the house.

Apart from this, at the cafeteria, every purchase generates a percentage of revenue which goes directly towards the NGO Survivors Malta, which is an NGO organization that Sarah Cachia started in order to create a safe space for survivors to communicate.

After spending so much time in the ITU waiting area at Mater Dei Hospital, Sarah Cachia understands how difficult those hours in the waiting area can be. This is why Jacob’s Coffee Run started. This project delivers sandwiches and coffees to all families waiting in the ITU waiting area. It’s not only about the coffee and the sandwich, it’s also about giving people love and hope.

Jacob's Brew Cafe

Speaking of Mater Dei, if you haven’t heard of the Reunited Pet Cabin project, listen to this. Jacob’s Brew is working on having a designated room built at the hospital where patients can visit their pets. Jacob’s family knows the importance of pet therapy in the recovery of patients from Jacob’s own experience.

As a 15 year old boy at ITU at Mater Dei Hospital, Jacob requested week after week after waking up from his coma, to see his Yorkshire Terrier dog, Peanut. Unfortunately, Mater Dei does not allow dogs in the building, meaning that his parents were struggling with how to make his dream come true without breaking hospital regulations. They even cut off some of Peanut’s hair for him to hold on to until they can someday reunite.

A long time after, Jacob was on the road to recovery and allowed to go outside the hospital to see his beloved Peanut. That experience was a detrimental part of Jacob’s recovery and nothing made him happier. After experiencing this first hand, the family are doing all they can to make this possible for other patients at the hospital.

And this is just the beginning. The family is aiming to help more and more people around the Maltese islands.

How can you help?

During the Christmas period, we all become ever more conscious of the social need to do our part for the general good of the Malta population suffering from financial disadvantages.

Jacob's Brew Cafe

There are so many ways you can help the generous and kind social enterprise with their mission in helping people strive and cope during their difficult periods in life. You can visit Jacob’s Brew and enjoy a lovely sandwich or scone, where a percentage of the proceeds go to several good causes.

The food was delicious, very reasonably priced and most importantly, you are helping a great cause. You can also offer a donation to help Jacob’s Brew support these great causes. Don’t forget, if you see someone that is going through a difficult period, point them in the right direction. Entities such as NGO Survivors Malta are there to help.


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