October 13, 2017 Opportunity

Starbucks Supports Local Revitalization and Youth Hiring in Miami Gardens

Working with community and civic leaders in Miami Gardens, Starbucks is launching a long-term effort to create local jobs, provide training opportunities for youth, and invest in local minority-owned businesses

Opening Monday, Oct. 16, the new store is part of Starbucks ongoing effort to open stores in at least 15 underserved, low- to medium-income communities by 2018

Miami Gardens Mayor Oliver G. Gilbert III and Chief of Police Delma K. Noel-Pratt joined Starbucks partners (employees) and more than 100 community and civic leaders at a special preview event at the new store today

MIAMI GARDENS (Oct. 13) – On Monday, Oct. 16, Starbucks will open a new store in Miami Gardens, Fla., the latest in the company’s ongoing nationwide initiative to open stores in at least 15 underserved, low- to medium- income communities across the U.S by 2018.

Each location, including the store in Miami Gardens, aims to support ongoing revitalization efforts in the community by creating new jobs, engaging local women and minority-owned vendors and suppliers, and collaborating with local nonprofits to support training opportunities for youth in the community.

“We believe Starbucks can play a meaningful role in creating local jobs, while supporting this community’s ongoing efforts to drive economic revitalization and social change,” said Rodney Hines, director for U.S. social impact. “By investing in Miami Gardens and opening this beautiful new store, we want to demonstrate that businesses can join with civic and community leaders to help create opportunities for all.  We are grateful for the community’s support and look forward to welcoming everyone when we open on Monday morning.”

Seven similar stores are already open across the country in the Jamaica neighborhood in Queens, N.Y.; Ferguson, Mo; central Phoenix; Englewood in the southside of Chicago; East Baltimore; Long Beach, Calif., and White Center in south Seattle. The store in Miami Gardens is the first such Starbucks® store to open in the southeast U.S. The company will open two more stores, in Birmingham, Ala., and Trenton, N.J. in the coming months.

Each of these stores, including the location opening in Miami Gardens, has 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 is working with South Florida CARES Mentoring Movement to provide the multi-week training program to at least 100 local youth each year, leveraging 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. These trainings will also help Starbucks continue to make progress on its commitment to connect Opportunity Youth, the estimated 4.9 million young people ages 16 to 24 who are not in school nor employed, to meaningful jobs, education and a pathway to lifelong success.

“South Florida CARES and the National CARES Mentoring Movement are inspired by Starbucks dedication to giving back to its community,” said Tracey Robertson Carter, Executive Director of South Florida CARES. “Our four-year partnership with Starbucks has been a joyful marriage of our shared missions, and has created tremendous opportunities for the young people we serve every day. We are thrilled to celebrate the opening of the new Miami Gardens store, and deepen this important work alongside Starbucks partners and the community.”

The store is also partnering with Miami-based Bunnie Cakes to sell locally made gluten-free vegan passionfruit cupcakes in the store. Born and raised in Caracas, Venezuela, owner Mariana Cortez started Bunnie Cakes after two of her children were born with celiac disease and she was not able to find treats for their birthdays. From there, Bunnie Cakes was born and has been locally recognized as making one of the best cupcakes in Miami. It has also been nationally named as a winner on the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars. Most recently, Cortez and her husband, Sebastian, opened a studio adjacent to their bakery as a place for the community to have birthday parties and cake decorating events.

Meet the Team Behind Starbucks in Miami Gardens

Located at 19401 N.W. 27th Ave. in Miami Gardens, the new store has hired 28 partners, many from Miami Gardens and neighboring communities. With industry-leading retention, hiring locally is an important part of Starbucks strategy to support economic development and build stronger connections with the community. Both full-time and part-time partners at the Miami Gardens store will able to take advantages of the company’s benefits, including full health care coverage and equity in the form of stock; the Starbucks College Achievement Plan, which gives partners the opportunity to get a bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University with full tuition reimbursement; and more.

D.J., store manager

D.J. lives in Miami Gardens and is an 18-month Starbucks partner. She knew she wanted to work for Starbucks after learning about the company’s mission and values from a local District Manager. D.J. has been a mentor for South Florida CARES for nearly a year, and is also part of the local Opportunity Youth Council, which teaches retail excellence. Her goal for the store is to have all her partners become CARES mentors, or to have graduated from the CARES program. She is passionate about serving the community and her partners and is interested in partner development and creating opportunities for all. “I am a proud example of ‘it takes a village,’” said D.J. “So many people have been involved in my success, and I want to be ‘the village’ for Miami Gardens.”

Shawanna, shift supervisor

Shawanna lives in Miami Gardens and has been a Starbucks partner for six months and says, “every day I get to do something I love and have an impact on people's lives.” She believes a job can change lives, and that with the right roles and environments, young people can thrive and do their best work. 

Cherbs, shift supervisor

Cherbs is a three-week partner. She says, “What excites me about this store is waking up every day to go to work with a purpose. A purpose to love, a purpose to pour into the life of others. A purpose to give back.”

Adriana, shift supervisor

A two-year Starbucks partner, Adriana is a lifelong resident of Miami Gardens. Regarding her experience at Starbucks, Adriana says, “I get to work with a lot of people I get to relate to and make the customers happy. With a single cup of coffee, I can change someone's day.”

Hibab, barista

Hibab is a student at nearby Broward College and joined Starbucks six weeks ago. This is her first job. Hibab says she “loves the environment and how friendly everyone is, as well as meeting different customers and getting to know them personally.” She adds, “Knowing that we made someone's day better makes me feel that my day had so much more meaning.”

Rose, barista

Rose, a mother of three, lives in Miami Gardens. She has more than eight years of experience with Starbucks. She “loves what Starbucks stands for, including the benefits and how the company is true to its mission and values.” She looks forward to working with local youth and building their skills. 

Dy'Mesha, barista

Dy’Mesha is a high school student from Miami Gardens who now lives in North Miami. She has been with the company for three months and first heard about the job through Walk and Knock, a community engagement initiative of the Miami Gardens Police Department. When asked about her experience at Starbucks, Dy’Mesha says, “I like connecting with the customers and getting to know all the partners. I like to meet different people and look forward to the opportunity to work with youth and South Florida CARES.”

Toré, shift supervisor 

Toré is from Liberty City, and now lives in Miami Gardens. A six-year partner and Coffee Master, she loves the opportunity to meet residents and community leaders. She says, “as a resident it feels amazing that we have something to call our own and I'm a part of it.” She is excited for “the work of the store to touch the lives of youth and to prevent for them what has happened to some of my friends in the community.”

Ary, barista

Ary, a three-month partner, lives in Miami Gardens and hopes to become a nurse one day. She is excited to be a part of the new store because “we are giving back to Miami Gardens and helping people who need it.” 

Chloe, barista

Born and raised in Miami Gardens, Chloe is a freshman at St. Thomas University. She wants to become a defense attorney one day and fight for the rights of wrongfully imprisoned people. A three-month partner, she says she’s happy to “work in an environment where my family loves to come.”

Imani, barista 

Imani is a senior in high school and three months into her job at Starbucks, also her first job. Her mother, a Miami Gardens police officer, encouraged her to interview with the company. Imani enjoys meeting new people and making Starbucks beverages, while also volunteering in the community.

Izzy, barista

Izzy is a sophomore in college where she is studying nursing.  She lives in Miami Gardens and has been with the company for three months. Izzy’s father committed suicide and she says that she was in a bad place until she came to her team at Starbucks.  She is looking forward to working with South Florida CARES and is “excited about the new experiences with the Miami Gardens store and looking forward to the whole experience.”

Kimmie, barista

Kimmie, a three-month partner, was born and raised in Miami Gardens and is a sophomore in college. Her brother is a detective with the Miami Gardens Police Department. She has a desire to work with youth in the local community and help prevent them from engaging in gang activity.

Provi, barista

Provi has been with Starbucks for two months and is a high school senior living in Miami Gardens. She enjoys “the friendly environment, the benefits and that we are allowed to be ourselves.” Her family and store partners have said they seen immense potential in Provi.

Brian, barista

Originally from Uruguay, Brian joined Starbucks three months ago. He says, “every time I visited Starbucks, everyone was so nice. I was really attracted to the vibe.” He has already reached out to a counselor at Arizona State University to start his application through the Starbucks College Achievement Plan.  He is interested in studying sports nutrition and personal fitness. 

Nadia, barista

Nadia has been with the company for three months. This is her second job following a part-time job at her church where she also served as a youth leader. Nadia says she joined Starbucks because “they care about their employees and the environment.” She hopes to “make a difference in people's lives.” Nadia is a self-taught artist and graphic designer and a spoken word poet and pianist. She also notes, “my big passion is mental health and I want to use art to help others with their mental struggles.”

Britney, barista

Born and raised in Miami Gardens, Britney is first generation Haitian American and a senior in high school. Three months into her first job, she says, “I love the environment. Everything here at Starbucks is chill. I love the new store concept and what Starbucks is doing.”   

Fabienne, barista

Fabienne lives in Miami Gardens and has been with the company for six weeks. What she loves most about the store is “making awesome coffee and being involved with the youth to create better outcomes.” She hopes that working at Starbucks will help her get over her shyness and fear of public speaking. 

Jojo, barista

Jojo has been a Starbucks partner for just over two weeks. She lives in Miami Gardens and is a sophomore in college. She says, “as a customer I wanted to work for a company that treats their customers with respect. Helping others like myself and doing it in my neighborhood ... it's very important to me.”

Rose, barista

Rose is attending Miami Dade College where she is studying mathematics. She lives in Miami Gardens with her husband. They are newlyweds.

Julissa Bella, barista

Julissa is from Miami Gardens and now lives in North Miami Beach. She has been with the company for two months and credits Starbucks for taking a chance on her when others would not. 

Kevin, barista

Kevin, a three-month partner, is a nursing student living in Miami Gardens. He joined Starbucks because he “wants to be a part of something bigger and wants to be a part of the change going on in this community.” 

Isaac, barista

Isaac, a three-month partner, wants to join the military one day. He previously worked at a Starbucks licensed store and enjoyed the experience. He wanted to be a part of the Miami Gardens store and looks forward to “being able to help in the community.”

Tracy, barista

Tracy, a three-month partner living in Miami Gardens, is studying to be a dental assistant. She was referred by another partner at the Miami Gardens store. She says, “I had heard great things about the culture. I think this is best environment I have ever had in a job.”

Lisa, barista

Lisa was formerly on the licensed store team at the Miami airport before transitioning to the company operated location in Miami Gardens. She says, “I like that that we are active in the community, a community that I am a part of." She has a passion for education and mentoring youth. 

Jesse, barista

Jesse is studying computer animation in college and is looking for his work at Starbucks to help him be more comfortable interacting with others. He is a three-week partner and says he enjoys “interacting with the customers, seeing their smiles and making a difference.”

Adrian, barista

Adrian, a three-month partner, lives in Miami Gardens and is a senior in high school. This is his first job. He enjoys “the atmosphere, the people, and the fact that you can be who you are and not be judged.” He looks forward to getting to know the community over coffee. Adrian is captain of his dance team and an aspiring dancer.


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