A Powerful Partnership: Wellspring Family Services & Starbucks

Helen Keller said it so well: “Alone we can do so little; together we can do so much.”

That captures the power of Wellspring’s partnership with Starbucks in supporting the work we’re doing with children and families facing homelessness. Yes, the Seattle-born company that turned a morning cup of coffee into a global lifestyle brand is deeply involved in the community, and we’re so grateful for their help!

Some examples? In June, The Starbucks Foundation awarded Wellspring Family Services a $75,000 grant that is covering the cost of a new Wellspring Housing Stability Specialist position, as well as some specific assistance funding for our children and families facing homelessness. With our community’s homelessness crisis, this work is critical and will help our efforts to address the growing need. With this Starbucks support, we expect to help in providing housing to 75 families over the next year.

Recently Wellspring was invited to participate in a working session at Starbucks’ headquarters to discuss solutions for unsheltered families. The multi-hour conversation produced three new initiatives to address specific issues around homelessness. We were grateful to be at the table, and are excited about being part of the ongoing conversation about this crisis in our community.

Earlier this past summer, Starbucks asked Wellspring to supply a story for the incredibly successful Pearl Jam “Home” concerts in Seattle. Starbucks requested a client profile story—one that would demonstrate the value of the services Wellspring provides. Former client Tai Powell (now a Wellspring manager) and his partner, Shawn, whose family was featured in our annual luncheon video, stepped up. The Starbucks-produced video has now been viewed by more than 64,000 people online!

Twice now, Wellspring has partnered with Starbucks, Mary’s Place and United Way on Family Resource Exchange events. The most recent event, at Olympic Hills Elementary in northeast Seattle, provided on-site support for over 200 families facing homelessness. These resources included housing, employment, legal, and financial services. The Starbucks-funded housing stability specialist mentioned above played a key role for Wellspring at that event. Wellspring will take part in a third Exchange event this fall.