Starbucks is launching a test program that will allow their full-time employees to split their work hours between the café and “volunteering” for local nonprofits.
The company hopes that by allowing their employees to spend their time helping the community, it will keep their workforce happier and reduce turnover.
36 workers have been selected for the program across 13 different cities. The employees will spend 20 weekly hours working at their Starbucks outlet while spending the other 20 hours at a charity. Additionally, the employees will still be receiving all of their full-time benefits despite only spending half of their time at the restaurant.
The employees are working with charities that range across dozens of initiatives, including helping the environment, feeding the hungry, aiding the homeless, supporting refugees, and facilitating disaster relief.
The program, which is being called the Service Fellows pilot, is being facilitated through Points of Light, a nonprofit volunteering group. The 6-month pilot program will collectively provide 17,000 hours of community service across America.
“Starbucks partners have a passion for service both in and out of their stores. The program powers that passion through philanthropy and partnerships to have the greatest impact,” said Virginia Tenpenny, vice president of global social impact at Starbucks and executive director of The Starbucks Foundation.
“Our Service Fellows pilot is an innovative model that combines work, service, and partnerships, a model that will inform how we catalyze our partners and grantees to create enduring change in our communities,” she added.
Points of Light will be paying the Service Fellows through a grant that is provided by the Starbucks Foundation. If the program is found to be successful, Starbucks may be recruiting more workers for the initiative in fall 2019.
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