Getting vets integrated back into civilian life is a daunting challenge.

That’s why the Starbucks Corporation is stepping up looking for a few good men and women to fill their ranks.

The world’s biggest coffee chain said on Wednesday it would commit to hiring at least 10,000 veterans and spouses of active military in five years.

It also said five new and existing US Starbucks cafes on or near military bases will share a portion of each sale with non-profit organizations that help veterans re-enter the workforce.

Many US companies have committed to hiring thousands of military veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Seattle-based Starbucks said it will have specialized recruiters to match the unique skills of veterans and their spouses with company jobs.

Announced ahead of Veterans Day on November 11, Starbucks’ new effort aims to expand and strengthen its existing mentoring program through the Armed Forces Network.

“This is not only about hiring baristas,” Chief Executive Howard Schultz told Reuters.
Starbucks is seeking individuals with experience in everything from leading teams to building and managing complex, global supply chains, Schultz said.

As the company expands globally and gets coffee and tea from around the globe, veterans offer international experience and foreign language skills.

Starbucks employs roughly 134,000 people in the United States, including “thousands” of veterans and their spouses. It did not offer a more precise breakdown.

The five revenue-sharing stores near bases will donate 10 cents from every transaction, with a minimum annual gift of $100,000.

The first two will be in San Antonio, Texas, and Lakewood, Washington.

Donations from the stores will benefit Goodwill Industries International Inc. programs Operation Good Jobs, in San Antonio, and Vested in Vets, in Lakewood.

It’s sad to see veterans who’ve just risked their lives, in some cases, doing multiple tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, come back home and find no way to reintegrate – especially when it comes to finding a job.

Thankfully the folks at Starbucks are stepping up to provide the “jolt” they need to get back on their feet.

Starbucks - helping vets get back in the flow of civilian life – our Ray’s Ray of Hope for today!