Let's be honest, it's college. Most of us run on caffeine, and those of us that don't still like free stuff. But coffee isn't just fuel, it's a medium for people connecting – so we thought, why not offer a free cup of coffee and a smile to the campus each week? 

We gather on the Main Quad outside of the Illini Union on Fridays from 11am-1pm.

Our offerings include ethically sourced, high quality coffee, because free doesn't have to be bad. We also serve a seasonal offering that's not caffeinated alongside it. Think lemonade when it's hot and cocoa when there's a chill in the air.

Other than free coffee, our tent is also an easy and low-pressure way to meet us as a ministry. We'd love for you to stop by, say hi, and connect with one of our students to learn more about I-Life. We might even write your name on the cup...

Check out our map below, and we'll be looking forward to meeting you on the quad!


For the 2022-23 school year, the below Honduran coffee from Jorge Serrano is unavailable to us. We have appreciated his partnership and look forward to trying again next year. Below, you can read about our historic partnership. In the meantime, check out what we’re currently offering:

Martina Bernardo de Martin and her husband Juan Jose are indigenous Mayan coffee producers who speak Mam.
Martina is in charge of their family coffee fields and wet mill processing, while Jose coordinates the business. Their
coffee is cultivated in the Sierra de Los Cuchumatanes mountains of Huehuetenango, approximately 3 hours north of
Huehuetenango. The Martins wet process at a site amongst their fields where their coffee is fully washed. Processing in
the remote area of Rio Ocho brings out fruity flavors and less acidic characteristics similar to that of a natural processed
coffee. This is the third year Kapeh Utz (our bean supplier) has worked with Martina and Jose to isolate specific lots and sectors of their
coffee lands.

Varieties: Caturra, Red Pache, and Bourbon
Grade: Strictly hard bean (SHB), 1900 - 2000 meters
Preparation: Fully washed. Sun dried on concrete patios and black nylon
Certifications: Organically farmed, but not certified organic. Direct trade
Cup Characteristics: Sugarcane, honey, chocolate, sweet orange citrus acidity, red wine

Our roaster is still The Friendly Bean in Kansas City, MO, who you can read about below.


For the past ~ 8 years, our beans were grown by Jorge Serrano in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. As he farms his beans in the towns of Siguatepeque and Comayagua, he has a few commitments that he holds to:

  1. Produce the best quality coffee he can produce year in and year out.
  2. Pay his workers at least 10% more than standard wages for coffee workers.
  3. Donate coffee to a roaster in Honduras who roasts coffee for local restaurants/businesses and retail that generates more revenue to go back into local missions projects.

Specifically, that revenue goes to help a ministry called Casa Hogar Vida, an organization that is dedicated to helping the people of Honduras.  Honduras reports one of the highest rates of people infected by HIV (33,000 in 2011) and has 43,000 orphans due to AIDS, so the need is incredibly high. Casa Hogar Vida stands in the gap with an orphanage which houses children that have either lost parents to HIV/AIDS or have been born HIV positive. Currently the housing project they offer has 40 homes. In addition to the orphanage, they also have a nutrition center which assists families in the community with training, information and basic healthcare needs, and community center. The center currently has approximately 70 kids involved. 

All this to show that when Illini Life orders beans from Jorge, we're helping to supply for those in need in Choluteca.

Jorge sells his beans to The Friendly Bean in Kansas City, MO. John, the owner there roasts the beans fresh for Illini Life when we order them. The Friendly Bean has a commitment to donate at least 50% of the profits from sales back to Honduras to support Casa Hogar Vida. As well, they have worked to train the roaster in Honduras to bring out the best qualities of Jorge's beans. Then, when Illini Life orders our beans, John ships them to us and we brew them fresh in our office on campus every week.

Simply put the more cups of free coffee we give out, the more students on our campus we bless AND the more help we offer to those in need in Honduras. If you'd like to learn more about our free coffee ministry, contact one of our staff or stop by on a Friday. We'd love to tell you more.