Drip Coffee and the Columbia community drank coffee for a cause Wednesday March 27. Both the Five Points and Main Street locations donated 10 percent of all their sales to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP).

Sean McCrossin, owner of Drip, says he wanted to reach out to the South Carolina chapter of the foundation and donate because this cause is close to him and the rest of the Drip community.

“In the last year or so we’ve lost, unfortunately, we’ve lost a few people in our community to suicide,” McCrossin said. “Depression is a real thing that we all will battle at some point in our life, and I just want people to know that there is someone they can reach out to.” 

When the foundation learned that McCrossin and Drip wanted to do their part in suicide prevention, they wanted to have someone on site at both locations with materials to talk to people.

One of those volunteers to arrive at Drip is Anita Baker, a board member for the South Carolina chapter of AFSP. Baker says she started volunteering with the foundation after working in the mental health field for 15 years.

“We want the community to know that there is hope,” Baker said. “The message we send out is a difficult subject, but we want people to know that there is hope.”

As of 2016, suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in South Carolina, and it is the second leading cause of death in people ages 15 to 25. Baker says it is so important that places like Drip support their local community and those around them struggling with mental illness.

“We have a huge task in front of us to reach people in this city and state. To have businesses come alongside us is extremely encouraging and helpful and will touch so many people’s lives just today,” Baker said.

Grayson Cline, a University of South Carolina student and Drip regular, said she is glad the coffee shop is helping a cause that affects so many. “I don’t know anyone who has not been affected by suicide in some way, so I think it’s really great they are supporting this cause.”