Submitted by Starbucks Corporation
commitment to support improved educational opportunities in China,
Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq:SBUX) today entered into an agreement
with the China Soong Ching Ling Foundation to provide 12 million RMB
($1.5 million USD) to support a program aimed at helping students in
need -- and their teachers -- in rural China.
In a ceremony at the Great Hall of the People, attended by Starbucks
chairman Howard Schultz, key Chinese government officials including Mme. Gu
Xiulian, Vice Chairman of the Standing Committee of the National People's
Congress and Chairman of All China Women's Federation, local dignitaries
and community leaders, Starbucks and China Soong Ching Ling Foundation
signed a formal agreement which establishes a program to help improve
access to education for disadvantaged youth and provide quality training
for women teachers in rural areas. China Soong Ching Ling Foundation
anticipates reaching approximately 3,000 teachers and thousands of students
by the year 2010.
The agreement outlines a multi-faceted educational improvement
program that will be carried out over the next four years, two
elements of which were detailed today:
-- Teaching the Teachers. Many teachers in rural schools have
little or no formal training in how to teach. Three thousand
female teachers from 1,000 primary and middle school in five
Western provinces (Chongqing, Yunnan, Shannxi, Sichuan and
Ningxia) will be given training during summer and winter
holidays to improve their teaching skills and provide them
with updated techniques to help their students learn.
-- Starbucks "Libraries." Three hundred schools will be outfitted
with books, computers, teaching tools and upgraded sports
"We are as passionate about our commitment to our communities as
we are about achieving financial success," said Mr. Schultz. "By
creating this program with the China Soong Ching Ling Foundation,
which has done so much good work for children, we will provide tools
and teacher training that will help children in rural China build
Mr. Hu Qili, Chairman of China Soong Ching Ling Foundation,
presented an Honorary Certificate to Mr. Schultz to express his
appreciation towards Starbucks on behalf of the Foundation.
Mr. Yu Guilin, Executive Vice Chairman of China Soong Ching Ling
Foundation, noted that "Starbucks has been in China for just a few
years, but they clearly understand how important education is to the
people of China and how vital it is to provide much-needed assistance
to children in rural China, particularly young girls. With this
commitment, we also will be able to provide up-to-date training for
rural teachers, so they will have the skills necessary to inspire
these young minds and help them learn."
This is the first effort funded under the auspices of the 40
million RMB ($5 million USD) China Education Project, which Starbucks
established in September 2005 with Give2Asia, a US nonprofit
organization founded by The Asia Foundation to promote philanthropy in
Asia, which will administer the Project grants.
The Project is overseen by a steering committee whose members
include: Mr. Yu Guilin, Executive Vice Chairman of China Soong Ching
Ling Foundation; Mme. Mo Wenxiu, Vice Chairman of All China Women's
Federation; Mr. Cen Jianjun, Deputy Director-General of the Department
of International Cooperation, Ministry of Education; Professor Hu
Dongcheng, Tsinghua University; Gary Locke, attorney and former
governor of Washington state; Xiao Rong, Asia Foundation; Charles
Wang, acting president, MeiDa Beijing Coffee Company; John Hsu,
president, Shanghai Starbucks Coffee Company; Michael Wu, managing
director, Maxim Caterer's Limited; as well as Starbucks executives
Howard Schultz, Sandra Taylor, Christine Day and Jinlong Wang.
Schultz noted that being both a socially responsible and
profitable business are not mutually exclusive. "At Starbucks, the
commitment to help improve our communities is an integral part of our
culture and business practices," Mr. Schultz said.
Since the company opened its first store in China in 1999,
Starbucks store partners have been involved in ongoing community
initiatives from volunteer opportunities with local schools to
fund-raising activities in support of AIDS-afflicted orphans, local
educational charities, and the tsunami victims in Southeast Asia.
Starbucks Corporation is the leading retailer, roaster and brand
of specialty coffee in the world, with more than 10,500 retail
locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and
the Pacific Rim. The Company is committed to offering the highest
quality coffee and the Starbucks Experience while conducting its
business in ways that produce social, environmental and economic
benefits for communities in which it does business. In addition to its
retail operations, the Company produces and sells bottled
Frappuccino(R) coffee drinks, Starbucks DoubleShot(R) espresso drink,
and a line of superpremium ice creams through its joint venture
partnerships. The Company's brand portfolio provides a wide variety of
consumer products -- innovative superpremium Tazo(R) teas and
exceptional Starbucks Hear Music(TM) compact discs enhance the
Starbucks Experience through best-of-class products. The Seattle's
Best Coffee(R) and Torrefazione Italia(R) coffee brands enable
Starbucks to appeal to a broader consumer base by offering an
alternative variety of coffee flavor profiles.
About the China Soong Ching Ling Foundation:
The China Soong Ching Ling Foundation (SCLF) was established On
May 29, 1982, in the memory of Mme. Soong Ching Ling, late honorary
president of the People's Republic of China and wife of Dr. Sun
Yat-Sen, founder of the Republic of China.
The aim of the Foundation is to honor and continue the love and
concern for children's development that Mme. Soong Ching Ling
displayed during her lifetime, and to contribute to children's
education, scientific knowledge and overall welfare.
Edelman Public Relations, Beijing
Johnny Zhang or Carrie Fang, (86) 10 6530 8590 ext. 273
Copyright Business Wire 2006
It's the way we do business Contributing positively to our communities and environment is so important to Starbucks that it's a guiding principle of our mission statement. We jointly fulfill this commitment with partners (employees), at all levels of the company, by getting involved together to help build stronger communities and conserve natural resources.
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