(New York City, NY) – June 8, 2010 – In an effort to support the charitable and courageous endeavors of The Learning Tea Project, The Meaning of Tea® will provide a matching grant of $1,500 dollar for dollar for every purchase of tea in The Learning Tea online store. These donated funds will support the mission of teashop owner and founder of The Learning Tea, Katrell Christie, to greatly improve the lives of the children in an orphanage and elementary school in Darjeeling, India. One hundred percent of the profits from sales of Darjeeling green and black teas directly fund The Learning Tea Project.
Christie intends to repair the basic infrastructure of an impoverished and dilapidated Darjeeling elementary school, and provide students with basic school supplies (books, uniforms, shoes, desks, etc). These funds will also benefit girls from Darjeeling girl’s orphanage, ensuring that they have access to continuing college education in an effort to avoid child trafficking or prostitution trade. “With these tea sales, we are truly saving lives. The elementary school currently exists under very dire conditions. The Learning Tea has pledged to repair the school, put in toilet facilities, purchase new uniforms and shoes for the children and make sure propane is available for cooking midday meals,” explains Christie. “We also plan to provide girls in the local orphanage with a college education, so they can become self-reliant, productive members of their community. For these girls education is the only hope of rising above a life of forced labor or prostitution. The oldest three girls starting college next will be the first orphaned girls in this community to ever have had the opportunity. Thank you to The Meaning of Tea®, by shining a spotlight on our project, you are really saving lives.”
In order to truly open the world’s eyes to The Learning Tea’s journey, Christie will return to India in July 2010 with a film crew to document the conditions of the Darjeeling community and her work there. Considering that The Meaning of Tea’s® mission is to document the role that tea plays in renewing our modern world through tea inspired music, film, books, and more, we are honored to support this project that will raise awareness and document life changing efforts. “We can only hope that other tea institutions band together to support causes such as this, and sincerely use tea as a force to help create needed change to better the lives of the communities that are all around us,” says filmmaker and director of The Meaning of Tea®, Scott Chamberlin Hoyt. Above all, Katrell Christie notes that she has compassionately developed The Learning Tea to be “a sustainable way to provide tea to people who love it, to support jobs for workers in India who desperately need them, and to improve the lives of girls who have no other support.”
To support The Learning Tea Project, please purchase tea in their online shop,donate Delta Skymiles, or make an online monetary donation through PayPal. In addition, all proceeds of Katrell’s photographic prints of her journey through India go towards The Learning Tea Project.
The Meaning of Tea® project is an ongoing, tea-inspired journey that celebrates the history, rituals, spirituality and simple pure enjoyment of tea through the eyes of tea lovers from many places around the world. Our vision is to use tea and tea-inspired films and music, as well as books and blogs, conversation and ritual, to open the hearts and souls of those who are seeking fresh insight into the art of living authentically in today’s increasingly virtual society. The Meaning of Tea® project’s aim is to bring to light the mysteries of the world’s favorite beverage to larger audiences, and, as tea has done for 5,000 years, to stimulate health, friendship and community. Learn more atwww.themeaningoftea.com.
The Learning Tea is a humanitarian project started by Katrell Christie to help impoverished children of Darjeeling India. Raising funds through her photography and the sales of Darjeeling green and black tea, this project will put three orphaned girls through college per year. It will also repair an elementary school in Darjeeling and buy uniforms, supplies, books and food for its students. Learn more atwww.thelearningtea.com.
Scott Chamberlin Hoyt is a filmmaker, photographer, painter, budding tea connoisseur and director of The Meaning of Tea® project. His longtime interest in tea increased when he began studying various alternatives to orthodox modern medicine and learned that tea, and the enjoyment of tea, is one of the cornerstones of living life well. His perspective is augmented by years of world travel, and deepened by decades of exploration into Eastern thought. Scott is on the board of directors for Global Learning Across Borders, is a member of the American Botanical Council’s Director’s Circle, and he is president of the Tibetan Classics Translators Guild of New York. He holds an MBA from New York University.