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Blue Star Families Blog

Pride. Service. And the Green Apron.

The smile on Christina’s face could be seen by everyone in attendance.  As the highly-coveted Starbucks’ “uniform” was placed around her neck, Christina’s manager cheered from across the room, “You got your apron!”
 
Christina Parry, an Air Force Reservist, Air Force Spouse, and Starbucks barista, beamed with pride as she donned her new apron.  Thanks to Starbucks’ overwhelming support for the company’s military-connected employees (more affectionately referred to as “partners”), Christina’s green apron reflects her pride of service to our country with an American flag, her name, and “Air Force Reservist” embroidered boldly on the front.  
 
In addition to Starbucks’ commitment to its military-connected partners, the company is dedicating 12 military family stores across the country in 2015.  What is a military family store?  It’s a commitment by Starbucks to go above and beyond in support of each store’s local military community.  Concerned with the widening disconnect between the American people and members of the military, Starbucks is generously awarding one local nonprofit a grant to provide both local military families and their Starbucks partners with opportunities; opportunities for military families to enjoy enhanced programs and resources, and for Starbucks’ partners to go above and beyond in saying “thank you”.  
 
Blue Star Families is honored to partner with Starbucks to bridge the gap between communities across America and the military families that serve nearby.  Blue Star Families’ mission to strengthen military families and connect America to its military could not be a better fit for Starbucks’ most recent initiative, and we look forward to the innovative ways we will partner together in the year ahead.  
 
As I stood there proudly representing Blue Star Families and our members at Travis Air Force Base, I appreciated how this military store dedication ceremony was special to me for many reasons.  Not only did it confirm for me that Starbucks is committed to supporting military service members and their families, but it gave me confidence that together, we are making a difference.  With each military family store dedication, Starbucks and Blue Star Families, in addition to a handful of other notable nonprofits, will ensure that this conversation remains top of mind.  And through conversation, awareness, and resources, our impact will be felt across the country.
 
As I left the Fairfield, CA, Starbucks, I couldn’t help but smile as I saw the American flag on Christina’s green apron.  At Starbucks, every partner wears his or her green apron with pride.  The apron symbolizes far more than a uniform.  Similar to the military, it symbolizes pride of service: service to customers and service to the community.
 
For Christina, wearing this green apron “lets customers recognize that serving them is by choice…whether it be turning wrenches on the flight line or serving them their favorite drink. I couldn't be more happy to have my apron.”