Southsider Voice correspondent
A group of men are huddled around a table in conversation as a woman sits on a couch reading a book while another woman works intently on her laptop.
This cozy scene at Coffeehouse Five, 323 Madison Ave., Greenwood, plays itself over and over during a typical day. The multipurpose shop, whose walls are adorned with plaques and other items, is the area’s only “for-benefit” coffeehouse that uses its proceeds to support stronger marriages and families through free programs such as premarital and marriage counseling and addiction recovery.
The shop, open from 7 a.m.-6 p.m. weekdays, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturdays, is owned and operated by the husband-and-wife team of Brian and Michelle Peters, who are assisted by their children, Amanda, Taylor and Lucas.
The store gets its mojo from Amanda, who gets out the word through Instagram, Facebook and Twitter alerts to customers about upcoming happenings.
“When the business started we had less than 100 followers, and now we have 2,000 of them,” Mr. Peters said. “It is our goal to continue to grow.”
He told The Southsider Voice how he served on the staff on Community Church of Greenwood, where he counseled people with marriage problems and other concerns. The growth of those requests led him to how he is helping people today.
“I found out a lot of people did not get help due to the cost of counseling,” Peters said. “We just started to help others, and it began in a room at The Gathering Place. It was going to be a trial process; we have basically taken it one day at a time.”
Coffeehouse Five offers counseling on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays. Most clients are referred through word-of-mouth. The Peters helped twice as many people in 2015 when compared to 2014.
Peters laid out an aggressive goal for 2016, saying, “We would like to double our counseling mode, grow our worship service on Sundays to where we attract more than standing-room-only patrons and grow our revenue in the coffee shop.”
The business takes advantage of the avenues available to them to get the word out about its work. The shop make contacts through the Greenwood Chamber of Commerce, donates items for worthy causes and is trying to work with the city to get better signage.
“Our counseling is pastoral counseling,” said Peters, a licensed pastor. “The counseling we offer is biblical in nature. We get a lot of people who are always looking for that kind of help.”
Peters wants to work as hard as possible, knowing that it can lead him to help more families as Coffeehouse Five tries to make its mark in the community while helping improve families along the way.