Sarah Cachia is better known as the mother of Jacob a.k.a Titanium Man. In 2013, she co-founded support group ‘Survivors Malta’ together with her then 15-year-old son, after he survived a serious illness which nearly cost him his life and left him disabled.
Discovering that through her writing she not only helped herself to heal, but others too, she went on to tell her son’s inspirational story in her book Jacob – My Titanium Man.
Sarah always has something to say and to write with the sole purpose to inspire and to motivate, for she believes that there is always someone, somewhere that needs it.
Once upon a time that someone was her and her family. Wife to her husband of 30 years, Sammy, and also mother to Jacob’s younger 16-year-old sister, Chloe, and to her
Yorkshire Terrier Peanut, Sarah’s positivity shines through in her words. She has made it her mission not only to fulfil her son’s dream of opening his own coffee shop, but also
to continue to help supporting families facing trauma and initiating projects to better the lives of such families.
FOR THOSE THAT HAVEN’T HEARD OF IT, WHAT IS JACOB’S
Jacob’s Brew is our family-run business; a coffee shop with
a heart, giving back to the community in more ways than
one, PAYING IT FORWARD through various philanthropical
and community projects instigated through funds derived
from our revenue at the shop, which are donated by us to
our NGO Survivors Malta.
WHERE DID THE IDEA BEHIND JACOB’S BREW COME FROM?
Through our support group/NGO, Survivors Malta, we
have met up with so many families facing trauma (at their
request) for coffees; whether it be at the hospital or at
various cafe’s all over the island. Jacob then came up with
the idea, and indeed, expressed his desire to one day open
his own coffee shop whereby people can come to us for
support. This idea sparked the concept behind Jacob’s
Through the PAY IT FORWARD initiative, our paying customers may pass on their receipts stamped by us to
a family who is in need of support. These families may
return to our shop with the stamped receipt and we will
provide them with the support that they need to carry
on in their journey over a free pot of tea or coffee.
THIS IS A NEW CONCEPT FOR MALTA. WHAT
CHALLENGES HAVE YOU FACED BRINGING THIS TO
Starting up a coffee shop or any business for that
matter is no easy feat. Even more so when the business
has promised to ‘feed’ funds to a given charity. We were
told on many occasions that it could not be done. We
received no funding to help us achieve our goal and
many doors were shut in our face. It took a lot of hard
work and sacrifice, both personal and financial, for
Jacob’s dream to become a reality. Thankfully, we were
helped by people and local companies who believed in
us and what we were trying to achieve. Without their
support, we would not have made it. We will be forever
grateful to them.
We have been open for over a year now, and our efforts
are paying off, gaining not only recognition here in
Malta, but globally, too. Winning the Commonwealth
Point of Light award earlier this year and even receiving
a letter from the Queen herself commending us for our
efforts was the icing on the cake and testament to the
fact that together, we can all make a difference!
HOW HAS THE IDEA BEEN RECEIVED SO FAR?
New customers come to our shop with the impression
that they have to pay forward an extra coffee for
someone in need, as is done overseas. To the contrary,
it is us, our family, who pay forward a coffee or tea to
families seeking support. Many of our customers have
become regulars at our shop coming time and time
again, not just for the great food and beverages, but
simply because they know that by being our customers,
they are helping our cause.
WITH A POPULAR CAFÉ AND A PET CABIN IN THE
MAKING, WHAT OTHER PROJECTS DO YOU HAVE IN
At our coffee shop, we donate a percentage of our
revenue to our NGO, Survivors Malta, whereby funds
collected are used to initiate projects to help families
facing trauma. This includes projects such as Jacob’s
Coffee Run; which delivers free sandwiches and coffees
to the families in the ITU waiting area at Mater Dei
Hospital, and The Reunited Pet Cabin; a designated
room being built on the grounds of the Hospital where
pet visitation and pet therapy will be made possible.
We have only just begun with other projects in the
pipeline, and as a family, we will not stop in our mission
to continue to pay it forward by helping others. At
Jacob’s Brew we also encourage and assist community
projects such as:
CRAFT & COFFEE FOR CHARITY – Donated wool is
crafted into crocheted/knitted items to be given away
to chosen causes, bringing joy to the homeless, the
needy, and the sick.
THE TESSIE MONTEBELLO BOOK CLUB– Housed at our
shop, where books can be borrowed, swapped, and
donated by our loyal customers.
WOW SARAH, YOU MUST BE INCREDIBLY BUSY! HOW DO
YOU MANAGE THE WORK LIFE BALANCE?
I have learned to handle any given situation. I have
been to hell and back almost losing my son and his
survival gave me strength. I truly believe that you have
to hit rock bottom to find that strength. They say that
everything happens for a reason. The day my son lived,
was the day that I promised myself that I will make
that choice. Whatever I do, whether it be within my
family life, through my charity work or indeed working
day in day out at Jacob’s Brew, I prioritise accordingly,
giving my all at all times. I believe in what we do with a
passion, and it is that passion that drives me forward.
Busy is good. It keeps me focused on all that is good. It
keeps me positive. I will never grow tired of doing what
WHAT’S THE BEST BUSINESS ADVICE YOU HAVE EVER
RECEIVED, AND WHAT WOULD YOU ADVISE THOSE
THINKING OF STARTING UP?
Stick to your vision. Stay focused as to why you set out
to do what you are doing. Don’t let others deter you.
Nothing is impossible. There is always a way!
IS THERE ANY WAY PEOPLE CAN GET INVOLVED AND
Simple. Choose our coffee shop to have your next cup
of coffee. We donate a percentage of our profits to
Survivors Malta so as to enable them to initiate projects
through funds raised. The more we grow as a business,
the more we are able to help others! You can also
donate to Survivors Malta, either by sending a cheque
made payable to SURVIVORS MALTA and addressed to
Jacob’s Brew, 144 Triq Is-Salini, Marsascala or via bank
transfer to this account.
Account : SURVIVORS MALTA*,
IBAN NO: MT20MMEB44428000000042191304001,
SWIFT CODE: MMEB MT MT*
You can find out more about Jacob’s Brew and their
projects on the Facebook page Jacobs’s Brew – Pay If
Forward or on their websites www.jacobsbrew.cafe and
Interview By Dayna Clarke
© 2018 – VIDA Magazine