Young people in communities around Australia are set to benefit from a new fundraising initiative, launched by cafe group Jamaica Blue.
Students from Blacktown Girls High School were invited to a special breakfast on Friday 13th October, along with Foodco employees and representatives of Beacon Foundation to mark the start of the program. The breakfast was held at Jamaica Blue’s flagship store at Moore Park in Sydney.
Managing Director of Foodco (Jamaica Blue’s parent company), Serge Infanti, spoke at the event, saying the company is passionate about supporting Beacon Foundation in its work.
“Youth unemployment is at 12.5% in Australia, and up to 25% in some areas. So, as an employer of many young people across the nation, we feel Jamaica Blue has a responsibility to support its local communities.
“71 Jamaica Blue cafes have a Beacon partner school in their local community and our fundraising efforts will enable Beacon to run its successful High Impact Programs in these areas,” Mr Infanti said.
High Impact Programs are a series of one day workshops run in schools, designed and operated in conjunction with volunteers from the world of business and industry. They are targeted at secondary school year groups, seven to 12. Each program is designed to prepare and motivate young people for a successful post-secondary school transition by working with each individual to develop highly sought after employability and 21st Century skills.
Beacon CEO Scott Harris also spoke at the event, thanking Jamaica Blue for its generosity in setting up the fundraising initiative.
“The transition from secondary school to further education, employment or training is one of the most important in setting students up for success in life. Jamaica Blue’s fundraising efforts will allow Beacon to continue inspiring participants, and kick start the working lives of high school students.”
Scott also commented that the more connections a young person has with industry professionals while they are still at school, the higher their chances are of being inspired to seek a path of further education or employment.
During the launch event, the students were involved in a panel discussion around careers and the workplace, and also participated in a barista workshop.