Starbucks Opens in Jamaica Neighborhood of Queens, NY, in Nationwide Effort to Hire and Train Opportunity Youth in Diverse, Urban Communities

Similar Starbucks® stores coming soon to at least 15 communities
across the U.S. supporting economic development and community engagement
through collaborations with local nonprofits and civic leaders

Store initiative is a key strategy in Starbucks previously stated
goal of hiring 10,000 Opportunity Youth –
16-24 year olds who are
not in school and not employed

JAMAICA, N.Y.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Starbucks (NASDAQ: SBUX) today unveiled its first-of-its-kind store in
the Jamaica neighborhood of Queens, New York, marking a key milestone in
the company’s efforts to create pathways to meaningful training,
employment and education for opportunity youth in one of America’s most
diverse, yet underserved urban communities.

The store in Jamaica is the first in a nationwide initiative Starbucks
announced last year to deepen investments in at least 15 similar
communities across the U.S. by opening stores with the aim to create new
jobs, engage local women and minority-owned vendors and suppliers, and
collaborate with local nonprofits to support training opportunities for
youth in each community, all while delivering a fantastic Starbucks
retail experience.

Each of these stores will also have a dedicated in-store training space
where young people can receive customer service and retail skills
training, based on the same world-class training Starbucks partners
(employees) receive. Starbucks will also leverage existing programs
aimed at helping connect young people with internships, apprenticeships
and jobs in these communities and foster the type of dialogue and
engagement needed for continued social change. This training component
will also help Starbucks continue to make progress on its commitment to
connect Opportunity Youth – 16-24 year olds who are not in school
nor employed, an estimated 5.5 million across the U.S. – to meaningful
jobs, education and a pathway to lifelong success.

“Throughout Starbucks 45 years, we’ve challenged ourselves to help
create opportunities for our partners and the communities we serve,”
said Rodney Hines, director of community investments for Starbucks
retail operations. “By making a long-term investment in the form of new
stores, we hope to play a meaningful role in supporting ongoing efforts
to transform these vibrant communities – starting here in Jamaica – from
one with a legacy of systemic barriers to opportunity, to one where
young people see a pathway to lifelong success.”

In Jamaica, Queens, a New Starbucks® Store Brings Opportunity for All

Located at 89th & Sutphin, the first store in Starbucks
national initiative has hired more than 20 partners, many from the
Jamaica community, including store manager Alisha Wrencher, an 18-year
Starbucks partner born and raised in Jamaica, Queens.

“We have so many resources available for our partners to grow their
careers and to grow as individuals. It was clear when I first joined
Starbucks 18 years ago, as it still is today, that Starbucks takes care
of its partners. As the store manager, I’ll bring my enthusiasm and love
for Starbucks Mission and Values to the new store in Jamaica, Queens,
which is where I grew up and where I still live today. Our store
partners are going to be able to make an incredible impact in the
community with their neighbors, friends and the people they see in their
neighborhood every day,” said Wrencher.

Almost a quarter of a million of 16-24 year olds in New York , or one in
five, are disconnected, with an overwhelming majority of disconnected
youth coming from poor households and communities, and from minority
racial groups with 32% of disconnected youth being black, and 22%

“Tomorrow’s Starbucks store opening is significant because not just is
it in New York City, but it’s here in Queens. As the first of its kind,
the Queens site will serve as a model for the other 14 communities
nationwide. It’s particularly encouraging considering the Jamaica Now
Action Plan and the significant public investment committed and underway
toward the revitalization and smart growth of Jamaica,” said Queens
Borough President Melinda Katz. “Like Jamaica Now, Starbucks, too, saw
the potential of Jamaica and the strength of its community. Like Jamaica
Now, Starbucks, too, aims to expand opportunities. It’s the perfect site
for such synergy and we look forward to this partnership toward
Jamaica’s future.”

Dedicated Training Centers Enable Local Nonprofits to Train and
Engage Opportunity Youth

To support ongoing efforts to address this opportunity gap, Starbucks
has partnered with local nonprofit organizations – the Queens Connect
collaborative and YMCA’s Y Roads Centers – both of which have a long
legacy of addressing the emerging needs and challenges of the young men
and women from diverse backgrounds and delivering the right set of tools
and programs that engage and empower youth to reach their full
potential. Starbucks will work with the organizations to deliver
customer service and retail skills training opportunities to their youth
participants, utilizing a dedicated training space within the store
specially created by Starbucks design studio. The onsite training will
help meet an important need for local job skills training opportunities
for local opportunity youth receiving services from Queens Connect and Y
Roads, particularly those who are in the process of completing their
high school education and preparing to enter the workforce.

“Queens Connect is thrilled to partner with Starbucks on its new Jamaica
location,” said Ben Thomases, Executive Director of Queens Community
House, Queens Connect’s lead agency. “For 40 years, we have been working
to strengthen neighborhoods and bring special opportunities to
individuals within the borough. This partnership with Starbucks allows
us to help even more young people to develop their skills, launch their
careers, and become meaningful contributors to their community.”

“The partnership between the YMCA of Greater New York and Opportunities
for a Better Tomorrow offers a path to success for opportunity youth who
are in need of services to help them find employment and to continue
their education. We are proud to join hands with Starbucks to empower
young people in Jamaica, Queens, with marketable skills to help them to
find meaningful employment in a supportive and fun environment,” said
Gary Laermer, Chief Development Officer for New York City’s YMCA.

The new Starbucks location in Jamaica will help inform the design and
development for similar stores coming to at least 15 communities across
the U.S. by 2018, each of which will hire 20-25 people, work with local
minority-owned vendors and suppliers, and collaborate with local
nonprofits. The next location to open will be in the West Florissant
neighborhood of Ferguson, MO, where Starbucks broke ground on a new café
and drive thru store in November last year and is working with woman-
and minority-owned bakery Natalie’s Cakes and More, a local business
that was severely vandalized during the unrest in Ferguson in 2014.
Starbucks is now carrying the bakery’s signature caramel cake at a dozen
St. Louis-area locations. As a result, her workforce has grown from
three to 13.

“We look for people like Alisha, Natalie and local leaders when
developing these stores because they know the community, understand the
unique needs facing young people who are looking for meaningful work,
and share in our belief that businesses and communities can work
together to support economic development and social change,” added
Hines. “It’s the idea that we can do well and do good, and use our scale
to create a positive impact in each community.”

About Starbucks

Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically
sourcing and roasting high-quality arabica coffee. Today, with
stores around the globe, the company is the premier roaster and retailer
of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to
excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks
to life for every customer through every cup. To share in
the experience, please visit us in our stores or online at

1 Kids Count – Indicator Brief: Reducing the Number of
Disconnected Youth, The Annie E. Casey Foundation, July 2005, authored
by Dr. Rima Shore for the Annie E. Casey Foundation.