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Baristas prove they’re at Korea’s service

Starbucks staff in South Korea have launched a month-long service campaign here with a day of gardening in Seoul.

More than 250 people from Starbucks partners, customers and NGOs gathered for It’s My Park Day in collaboration with Seoul Green Trust.

They planted wild flowers, made coffee ground handcrafts and created community pocket gardens at Seoul Forest Park.

Starbucks Asia-Pacific president Wang Jinlong, and Starbucks Coffee Korea president Lee Seock-koo also joined the event from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. 
(From left) President of Starbucks Coffee Company Asia Pacific Wang Jinlong, Starbucks Coffee Korea president Lee Seock-koo, broadcaster Park Jeong-sook and Seoul National University professor Cho Kyung-jin are joined by other volunteers at Seoul Forest Park to launch the coffee franchise’s month of service in Korea. (Starbucks)
(From left) President of Starbucks Coffee Company Asia Pacific Wang Jinlong, Starbucks Coffee Korea president Lee Seock-koo, broadcaster Park Jeong-sook and Seoul National University professor Cho Kyung-jin are joined by other volunteers at Seoul Forest Park to launch the coffee franchise’s month of service in Korea. (Starbucks)

Starbucks offered its coffee to visitors who brought their own tumblers and mugs during the public event.

Following It’s My Park Day on April 1, Starbucks baristas are helping with community activities throughout Korea this month, including infant care in partnership with the Eastern Social Welfare Society and talent donation for single mothers’ groups. A tall-size coffee will also be given free to NGO members and customers who join local community services in April.

Starbucks started its Global Month of Service in 2011, and has pledged to reach 1 million hours of service throughout the world by 2015.

Starbucks Coffee Korea is partnering with more than 80 local nonprofit organizations in over 400 stores in 45 cities in Korea. Employees will carry out many other volunteer activities throughout the month at welfare centers, hospitals and schools across the country.

During last year’s Global Month of Service, the coffee company contributed 156,000 hours of volunteer work around the world in just 30 days, clocking up the equivalent hours of 76 people working full time for a year. In 2011 alone, more than 60,000 volunteers from 30 countries on 4 continents benefited 252,000 people globally.

Last April, Starbucks Coffee Korea partnered with 87 local community organizations for more than 190 activities, contributing more than 3,000 hours of service.

“For the past 40 years, Starbucks has engaged with communities from coffee farmers to local neighborhoods. This engagement has taught us a belief that we can use our scale to help communities thrive. I am glad to kick-off the campaign for Starbucks Asia Pacific in Seoul and celebrate our commitment to serve as a catalyst for positive change and will continue to take part in many more service events.” said Wang.

More information about how to join activities or its Global Month of Service is available at Starbucks or online at www.istarbucks.co.kr.

By Kirsty Taylor  (kirstyt@heraldcorp.com)
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