Be Inspired, Be L♥ve

Everyone has a purpose and everyone has something to give, even if it is a smile to someone in need of one.

Starbucks Global Month of Service: Washington Middle School & William Booth Center Projects

by MELODY on APRIL 20, 2014

Every April, Starbucks coordinates lots of volunteering projects in communities all across the United States, and internationally as well. Anyone can join in. Last year, I signed up for a tree planting project in Cle Elum. This year I picked two projects that looked interesting and that I could work around my work week. The first was Friday, April 18, 2014, and was a meal program at the William Booth Center (a shelter and meal program for homeless men). The second project was a middle school beautification project on Saturday the 19th. I had such a great time at both! If you haven’t signed up for a community service project, there’s still time.

IMAG0037 William Booth Center

William Booth Center


On the 18th, I met up with three partners to serve food at the William Booth Center. It turns out, they were all part of Starbucks finance (in various roles). Janey, Jake, and Christian told me that they come back once a month to serve food, all year long. I walked to the William Booth Center from my office, and got to work right away. Christian and I wiped down the tables and put out the salt and pepper. Janey and Jake started making some sandwiches to serve a small number of sack meals for those individuals who for one reason or another couldn’t make it to the hot lunch meal that we’d be serving. After cleaning the tables, I joined in with the sack lunch project: I added a banana, granola bar, a bag of chips, and a can of juice to the sack lunches to get them ready to distribute.


IMAG0041 Jake and Janey making sandwiches

From noon to 1:00 PM, I stood serving fish sticks to the crowd of homeless men who came through for lunch. Janey served up the soup, and Jake was on French fry detail. Not shown here, Christian was a hero doing the heavy lifting: He worked the deep fryers and brought us hot French fries and fish stick to replenish our supply as we ran out. Here we are checking out the food:


IMAG0046 William Booth Center Meal Program - Food Serving Jake Janey Christian

This was a super fun short volunteering project. Meryl, an older gentleman who seemed to be in charge of the kitchen, was very thankful that there was someone there to stand serving food for an hour.


IMAG0066 Washington Middle School

On the 19th, I went to Washington Middle School for a “beautification” project. I didn’t have a clue what I’d be doing but I was game. I met up with numerous Starbucks partners who were already familiar faces. I worked on a team with store manager Gypsy, assistant store manager Kienan, and partners Laurel, and Kiesha. We had to dig a trough around an area to be mulched, clean the area of most of the weeds, lay down paper, and then spread mulch over the paper. Easier said than done!

The team of volunteers listened to instructions on what to do:

IMAG0070 Group instruction 19 April 2014

From there, we split off into groups. There were other groups working in other areas, but my photos will just be from the team that I worked on. But I know that the school appreciated everyone who came out! I learned that that there are too few gardeners for the number of schools that they’re responsible for maintaining.First thing we did was dig a trough around the area to be mulched. I asked a person standing nearby to get an action pic of us working. Here I am with Kienan, and Adam (the little boy) working on troughs. Adam, the little child, was the son of one of the volunteers. He seemed to really like helping out with the trough digging. It was just adorable watching him trying to help us! Starbucks partner Ain Powell coordinated and put together this project (working in partnership with the school district) and I think (I sure hope I have this right) that Adam is Ain’s son.

IMAG0077 Me Kienan and Adam digging troughs

IMAG0080 Adam helps dig the trough 19Apr14

After preparing the lawn with a trough, we placed a layer of paper on the open area. It might not be obvious in this photo, be we got rained on pretty heavily doing this. I got down on my hands and knees and helped roll out the paper. I ended up soaked with muddy clothes, and loving it.

IMAG0081 - Working on making troughs

IMAG0086 Papering the area to be worked on

IMAG0092 Kienan Gypsy Keith working on spreading mulch 19 April 2014

A separate team that worked with the mulch (hauling it around the grounds in wheelbarrows) brought us mulch to cover our area of the grounds. Partner Keisha and I (to be clear, if you don’t know it already, I’m not a partner) rolled out paper, and partners Kienan and Gypsy then shoveled mulch over the paper. When we were done, it looked great!

IMAG0097 Finished mulched area of lawn 19 April 2014

We ended the morning with a group photo of all the volunteers. Thank you to everyone who came out. This was a fantastic project!

photo-10 - 19 April 2014 Middle School Clean Up Group photo

I know that the school employees were extremely appreciative. They explained that they just don’t have the resources to hire more gardeners and they’d really wanted to beautify the front grounds of the school. It does look great mulched.

(The Starbucks Melody blog is operated by Melody. All views expressed are the opinions of Melody. I do not work for Starbucks. This is a fan-created site featuring news & information relating to Starbucks, Teavana, Seattle’s Best, Evolution Fresh, and La Boulange. Starbucks does not operate this website.)

Currently, I am involved in the Operation Feed campaign in central Ohio, as well as the SmiledSoul Heart2Heart Around the World bracelet effort that I hope encircles the globe with words of inspiration, peace, and love. Everyone has a purpose and everyone has something to give, even if it is a smile to someone in need of one. I’d love to hear about your community service or pay-it-forward ideas and efforts!

Be inspired, be lve.

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