Buy Starbucks wristband, help create community jobs


Maybe we all don’t all want to work at Starbucks, but I’m going to donate $5 to the Create Jobs for USA campaign currently in place at the world’s largest coffee retailer.

For $5 you get a red, white and blue wristband, which in my case will become a stocking stuffer for a niece or sister.

The simple fact is that community businesses now employ more than half of all private-sector jobs, and they’ve created 64 percent of all new jobs in the past 15 years. Unfortunately, new job creation isn’t keeping up with the layoffs from the long U.S. recession, with U.S. unemployment stuck at about 9 percent.

So Starbucks has teamed up with the Opportunity Finance Network, a group of community lending institutions financing local businesses. These CDFIs, or Community Development Financial Institutions, support urban, rural and native communities with loans to low-income, low-wealth and other underserved people. It’s estimated that for every $3,000 donated into this project, one new job will be created.

You can read more about this at or just pick up some information while buying your next coffee at Starbucks.

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz is putting his money where his mouth is, committing $5 millon from his company to see the campaign. He’s a proponent of ending the gridlock in Congress but while not holding his breath on that, he’s also urging other CEOs to start spending some of the pile of cash they’re sitting on and start hiring or start some programs to create job growth.

Schultz also recently urged business leaders to stop campaign contributions to both the president and Congress until they reach a “fair, bipartisan deal” to reduce the federal debt. Hopeful thinking, but I liked it nonetheless.

So maybe skip that morning breakfast roll you stare at in the Starbucks case, and donate your $5 to help create a new job in your community. Your donation is worth seven times a such in new financing through these CDFIs, which gain the ability to acquire more financing from other sources.

So your $5 wristband is really worth $35!

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