They're back! Road to Refuge coffee cups roll out across Melbourne for Refugee Week.

Road to Refuge are running their Coffee Cup Project again this year to celebrate Refugee Week. Cafes across Melbourne will be stocking coffee cups with a Road to Refuge stamp, encouraging customers to think about the journeys of people seeking asylum and refugees who have shaped Australia.

From the 19th to 25th of June, local cafes will swap their usual coffee cups with coffee cups stamped with an image of Layla, one of Road to Refuge’s journey characters. Layla’s story is one of struggle and courage. She may be fictional but the journey of many others in her position is not.

The Road to Refuge web program is an educational and interactive website that allows you to make choices for a fictional asylum seeker along their journey from country of origin to Australia. You can check it out here.

Coffee lovers can share a #coffeewithlayla and place themselves in the position of a person seeking safety by taking an interactive journey on Road to Refuge’s website. By sharing images of their coffee cups with the hashtag #coffeewithlayla, Melburnians will be a part of a wider campaign to raise awareness and engagement about issues facing people seeking asylum and refugees.

Project co-ordinator James Hickey, who has worked with social enterprises and cafes across the city through his work with Scarf and Kinfolk, says the Refugee Week Coffee Cup Project will provide members of the public — whether already passionate about these issues, non-committed or just wanting to engage more in a constructive dialogue — a chance to kickstart this engagement.

"Although the concept of the project is quite simple, encouraging people to educate themselves further on the realities of seeking asylum, and providing them with the means to do so, is an extremely powerful tool. Creating opportunities for more informed, dynamic discussions is immeasurable," he said.

Road to Refuge is proud to be partnering with some of Melbourne’s best cafes, including coffee powerhouse Seven Seeds at all four of their cafes, with many opting in for the second year in a row. Visit your local cafe listed below and grab a #coffeewithlayla during Refugee Week.



  • Brother Baba Budan, Little Bourke Street

  • Good 2 Go, Hosier Lane

  • Hortus, Docklands

  • Kinfolk Cafe, Bourke Street

  • Sun Moth Canteen & Bar, Niagara Lane

  • Traveller, Crossley Street

Inner North

  • Addict, Fitzroy

  • Arkwright & Co, Carlton North

  • Assembly Coffee, Carlton

  • Auction Rooms, North Melbourne

  • Burnside, Fitzroy

  • Cafe Bu, Carlton North

  • Counter, North Melbourne

  • Everyday, Collingwood

  • De Clieu, Fitzroy

  • Friends of the Earth, Collingwood

  • Green Park Dining, Carlton North

  • Long Street Coffee, Richmond

  • Lulu Cafe & Gallery, North Melbourne

  • Newtown Specialty Coffee, Fitzroy

  • North Cafeteria, North Carlton

  • Seven Seeds, North Melbourne

  • Sir Charles, Fitzroy

  • Slowpoke Espresso, Fitzroy

  • Stagger Lees, Fitzroy

  • Twenty and Six Espresso, North Melbourne

Northern Suburbs

  • East Elevation, Brunswick

  • Lux Foundry, Brunswick

  • Milkwood, Brunswick East

  • Mixed Business, Fitzroy North

  • Pachamama, Brunswick

  • Phat Milk, Travancore

  • So & So, Travancore

  • Uncle Drew, Clifton Hill

  • Wide Open Road, Brunswick


  • Brighton Schoolhouse, Brighton

  • Coffee on Kareela, Frankston

  • Holy Bowly, Hampton

About Road to Refuge:

Road to Refuge is a not-for-profit organisation that generates informed, constructive and inclusive conversations about people seeking asylum and refugees in Australia. To do so, the volunteer-based group runs engaging and creative community events, educational initiatives and workshops alongside their interactive web-program.

You can follow them on social media through their Twitter, Instagram and Facebook page.

Or you can just head to their website and subscribe to their mailing list.

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