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Baristas Del Caribe, Starbucks Foundation grant $15K to PR Food Bank

As part of The Starbucks Foundation’s Global Community Impact Grants program, Baristas del Caribe nominated Puerto Rico Food Bank to receive a $15,000 grant to support the nonprofit’s “Mochila Alegre” program to mitigate hunger, improve nutrition, and quality of life for 300 vulnerable children in Puerto Rico. 

This contribution to the Food Bank is coupled with the $10,000 donation from the Mano Amiga Program from Plaza Las Américas Foundation, affiliate of Baristas del Caribe for a total investment of $25,000, foundation officials said.

“Supporting the efforts for hunger relief is very important to Starbucks and Baristas del Caribe.  We’re proud to support community organizations through volunteer work performed by our partners [employees] and, in this occasion, with Global Community Impact Grant, especially this year in which we celebrate the Starbucks 20th anniversary in Puerto Rico,” said Idis Ortiz-López, general manager of Starbucks Puerto Rico.

“Performing community service and being able to contribute with additional resources motivates us to continue growing, guided by our brand’s mission to inspire and nurture the human spirit, one person, one cup and one neighborhood at a time,” said Ortiz-López. 

The “Mochila Alegre” program was created in 2008 to meet the needs of children between the ages of 3 and 12 years old who are food insecure and come from low-income families. 

The program consists in providing each student a backpack that contains nutritious meals, snacks, and beverages easy to serve when school cafeterias remain closed, weekends and school breaks. 

In addition, the Food Bank provides food education and food resource information to children and their parents, including information on nutrition, healthy eating habits and how to access additional resources. The outcome of the program shows that good nutrition results in more alert children with better academic success and fewer absences.

Starbucks employees in Puerto Rico also plan to volunteer to help pack the backpacks that will be distributed to students, the company confirmed.

“Six out of 10 children in Puerto Rico live below poverty levels and depend on the school cafeteria for their only hot meal of the day. This generous grant from The Starbucks Foundation and Baristas del Caribe allows us to provide nutritious food to 300 children over the weekend and school breaks.  And this is great blessing for them,” said Puerto Rico Food Bank President Denise L. Santos.

Launched in March 2022, The Starbucks Foundation’s Global Community Impact Grants initiative is a corporate commitment to invest $30 million by 2030 to drive impact across the focus areas of youth empowerment, inclusion, and diversity, social services, hunger relief, economic opportunity, and coffee, tea, and cocoa-growing communities. 

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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