In seeking to fulfill our own potential to make a difference, we found that our goals and strategy led us to two clear areas of focus: underserved youth in the developed world and women in the developing world.
To create lasting change for youth and women, we also invest in initiatives that support our nonprofit partners in becoming more effective and harness the power of volunteers to create impact. Through these combined efforts, we aim to help youth and women unleash their personal promise — to be what’s possible.
Youth: Career exploration and job readiness
Throughout our more than 40-year history, we’ve given hundreds of thousands of young people their first jobs at our stores. Working closely with youth has built our store employees’ knowledge of what young people need to succeed in the world of work. We recognize that young people from underserved communities often lack access to information about how to get and keep a job. Through community investments and volunteerism, our goal is to share our insights and experiences with underserved youth to keep them engaged in their education and help them better prepare for adulthood. Read More >>
Women: Personal and professional advancement
Women represent more than 70 percent of our employees and have shaped our management and culture. Women also play an important role in the entire apparel industry, making up approximately 80 percent of garment workers worldwide. Through partnerships with vendors and organizations on the ground in the developing world, we focus our investments on providing female garment workers with work and life skills education and technical training that will help them move ahead in the workplace and in life.
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Funder to Partner: Leveraging our assets to support our partners
We recognize that our company has assets beyond cash that can enable nonprofits to be more effective and maximize their impact on the communities they serve. We work with our nonprofit partners to assess which of our company assets – particularly the skills and talents of our employees – can help them achieve their goals and strengthen their organizations. In 2010, 100 percent of our youth-serving partners received support beyond a cash grant.
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Service Leadership: Amplifying the impact of volunteerism
We believe there is unlimited potential to create positive change through the passions, talents, skills and commitment of volunteers. To help realize this vision, we have actively focused on how we can utilize our own volunteers more strategically and effectively. We are also part of a bigger movement that is focused on increasing the impact of volunteers.
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