The effects of climate change are far-reaching, and farmers around the world are especially sensitive to the impact. Traditional farming strategies may not yield the same results, and farmers now contend with an increasing number of variables that can affect coffee production.
I have a program on Sirius XM radio called “American Voices” in which I interview people about their lives. Each show, I talk to someone who has an unusual job – a boat captain at the mouth of the Columbia River, a groundskeeper at Fenway Park, a public health nurse in the Aleutian Islands, or a man who washes the windows of New York City skyscrapers. Each conversation is about the dignity and nobility of work. When you work at something you love, whatever it is, your chances for self-fulfillment and prosperity dramatically increase.
Today there are 22 million Americans who want to work but can’t find a job. And 46 million people live in poverty. That’s the highest number in history – higher even than during the Great Depression. Real median per capita income in the United States in 2010 was the same as it was in 1996, which means that the middle class is stuck and losing ground.
At one time, East Liverpool, Ohio was known as “the Pottery Capital of the World.” Today this city – like so many others in America – is facing a jobs crisis as its industries decline. But I recently got to visit one ceramics factory that is the story of a remarkable resurgence.
Inspired by Create Jobs for USA, a program Starbucks launched in November 2011 with Opportunity Finance Network, one of our long term suppliers, Ulrich Honighausen, came to us with a vision to address a gap in American manufacturing with a modern ceramic factory.
I’m excited to tell you about a new campaign we’re launching at (RED) this summer called (RED)Rush to Zero. From June 1-10, we’re inviting the world to BE (RED) during 10 days dedicated to fighting AIDS. We’re bringing together brands, celebrities, gamers, music fans and consumers around the world through a series of special events and digital experiences to raise funds and awareness, and Starbucks is participating.
On Foursquare, check in to any Starbucks store in the U.S. and Canada June 1 – 10, and Starbucks will contribute $1 (up to $250,000) to the Global Fund to fight AIDS, and you’ll get a badge to show your support.
Some incredible stories have come out of our second annual Global Month of Service, a 30-day event that mobilized partners (employees) and customers from around the globe to make a difference in their communities.
In Nashville, Tenn., 500 volunteers collectively donated 2,000 hours of service to transform a tract of land impacted by the city’s 2010 floods into a working and teaching urban farm. The new farm will host afterschool youth programs and provide food for citizens in need.
I’m going shopping this weekend. The weather here in Seattle seems to finally be turning a corner, which means it’s time to get some new spring clothes. But the real reason I’m hitting the racks (and why I’m telling you about it) is because from April 19-22, Banana Republic is donating 5% of purchases made (up to 500K) to the Opportunity Finance Network for the Create Jobs for USA fund, and giving me a 25% discount. So, the more I shop and save, the more they donate to a great cause!
Starbucks baristas and customers have been supporting communities together for a while now. Whether it’s working side by side at community service projects or making contributions to disaster relief efforts, we’re proud of what we’ve done and are looking forward to how much more we can still achieve.
Traveling up a mountain in the back of a pickup truck, on a bumpy road of hairpin turns, I feel dwarfed by the towering Mexican elm trees looming out of the evening mist. As we pass homes scattered among the coffee bushes that dominate the landscape, El Triunfo Biosphere Reserve feels a world away from the urban sprawl of Tuxtla Gutiérrez, the capital of the Mexican state of Chiapas, where I have spent much of the past week.
Each year this is one of my most anticipated events. The release of our Annual Global Responsibility Report is a time for us to celebrate our accomplishments toward building thriving communities in the neighborhoods where we do business. Through our steadfast commitment to ethically sourcing our coffee, developing comprehensive recycling solutions and activating partners and customers to participate in community service, we have continued to make great progress toward our stated goals.
Spring is here, which means 2012 is moving right along. How are you doing against your New Year’s resolutions? I didn’t “officially” set any this year, but the ones I had in my mind I failed within the first month. And I think I know why. It’s partly because I didn’t write them down to visually remind myself about them every day, but it’s also because I didn’t share them with anyone else, so no one was holding me accountable.
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