Social Development Investments

save the children program guatemala

Guatemala is a very important coffee-growing country for Starbucks. Some of our favorite coffees from Starbucks® Guatemala Antigua to seasonal favorite Guatemala Casi Cielo® are made possible thanks to the efforts of farming communities in Guatemala.

Since 2005, Starbucks has committed $2.6 million to support the Guatemala Education Initiative, an effort in which we team up with Save the Children to help bring education programs to remote coffee-producing villages in that country. In 2011, Starbucks launched a three-year project with Save the Children to improve education, health and nutrition for coffee-farming families in Guatemala’s Huehuetenango region.

Since its inception, the Guatemala Education Initiative has served over 10,000 pre and primary level school students in 24 communities in Guatemala. Students receive a wide array of learning, including improved health skills to basic reading, writing and math skills. The initiative works to prioritize the preservation of local cultures as well as educating students on the understanding of coffee harvesting.

Through a holistic approach, the program also incorporates trainings for educators and administrators – now reaching over 250 teachers – to help increase staff capacities and to further promote improved learning practices for children. Parents play a critical role in the initiative and are made aware of the importance and benefits of enrolling their children in pre-school as well as the valuable role they play supporting children at home. This sense of responsibility, coupled with learning about how governments and cooperatives work, is providing the basis for improved leadership and engagement throughout these communities.

“Starbucks’ dedication to improving children’s lives in the coffee-growing communities of Guatemala is an inspiration. Together, we’re opening the door to a brighter future for young children who will now have the opportunity to access the quality education every child deserves. Save the Children is proud to be Starbucks’ trusted partner.”
– Carolyn Miles, President & CEO

save the children program in guatemala

Learn more about the children, communities and impact of Save the Children’s Guatemala Education Initiative.

2013 Report Update

Public-Private Partnership in Colombia

In August 2013 Starbucks forged a first-of-its-kind relationship with the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) for a program to expand support and improve coffee yields and the livelihoods of 25,000 farmers throughout some of Colombia’s most remote and conflict-impacted farming regions. USAID and Starbucks will each contribute $1.5 million over three years to provide technical support, technology and market opportunities to small-scale coffee farmers in Colombia’s rural regions of Antioquia, Tolima, Huila, and Cauca.

"Starbucks scale and willingness to collaborate and innovate with others, like USAID, will help speed meaningful results to farming communities.”

Margaret Spears, Director of the Partnerships Office at USAID's Food Security Bureau

Ethos Water Fund

Starbucks supports water, sanitation and hygiene education programs through the Starbucks Foundation’s Ethos Water Fund. For each bottle of Ethos® water purchased, a contribution of $.05US ($.10CN in Canada) is made to the fund. Since 2005 $7.38 million has been granted through the Ethos Water Fund, benefitting approximately 430,000 people around the world.

Indonesia’s BLEND Project – Better Living Education, Nutrition and Development

In Indonesia’s Aceh province, Starbucks has teamed with Save the Children to improve children’s health and education in coffee-growing communities through BLEND (Better Living, Education, Nutrition and Development). Since 2009 Starbucks has contributed $2.1 million to the project and helped improve the lives of children and their families from more than 40 communities in the Bener Meriah district.

Education in Guatemala

Since 2005 Starbucks has contributed over $2.6 million toward the Guatemala Education Initiative, an effort with Save the Children to bring education programs to children living in remote coffee-producing villages in that country. Starbucks has been focused on Guatemala’s Huehuetenango region since 2011 through a three-year, $1 million project that is improving the overall quality of preschool and primary education for children in 20 communities.

CHAI – Community Health and Advancement Initiative

In tea-growing regions of India and cardamom-farming communities in Guatemala, Starbucks has helped support health and economic development programs for more than a decade through the Community Health and Advancement Initiative (CHAI) project, a partnership with Mercy Corps. Starting in 2011, Starbucks contributed $750,000 toward a three-year project with our tea and cardamom suppliers to improve access to clean water, empower young people to succeed in school and become leaders in their communities, and help people learn the skills to get a job or start a business.

“Over the course of a decade, Starbucks and Mercy Corps have transformed the lives of more than 80,000 men, women and children. Starbucks has shown its leadership by investing in the health and economic vitality of communities, whether it’s joining Mercy Corps to engage directly with tea estates in Darjeeling and Assam, or helping to lead industry-level collaborative efforts such as the Coffeelands Food Security Coalition.”

Neal Keny-Guyer, CEO of Mercy Corps

Water Access and Sanitation, Nutrition

Starbucks is committed to supporting local needs in water-stressed coffee-growing communities, and to supporting continuation of integrated water and sanitation programs and efforts to address seasonal hunger.

In the Sidama region of southern Ethiopia, Starbucks has been engaged in a project with Project Concern International (PCI) that began in February 2012 to improve the health outcomes of coffee farmers and their communities. In early fiscal 2013, Starbucks awarded a two-year $500,000 grant to make clean drinking water and safe sanitation solutions available in southwest Tanzania’s Mbeya District.

In January 2013 Starbucks joined with other coffee industry leaders for a three-year program called the Coffeeland Food Security Coalition to help combat seasonal hunger among coffee-farming families in Nicaragua in partnership with the global humanitarian organization Mercy Corps and local organization Asociación Aldea Global Jinotega.

"Food insecurity is larger than any one group can handle. The Coffeeland Food Security Coalition is one example of a trend towards integrating global food security, stable food production and sustainable environmental practices - a trend we expect will continue to grow in 2014."

Neal Keny-Guyer, CEO of Mercy Corps