Empowerment in Communities and Equal Opportunity: Starbucks Costa Rica Commemorates International Women’s Day

  • From recruiting to growth opportunities to equitable pay, Starbucks Costa Rica is committed to promoting equality in all its processes.
  • As part of Starbucks Community Promise, The Starbucks Foundation aspires to positively uplift 1 million women and girls in coffee, tea and cocoa-growing communities around the world by 2030.
  • Through Origin Grants from The Starbucks Foundation, Bean Voyage and Glasswing International launch programs to support over 1,250 women coffee farmers in Costa Rica.

San José, Costa Rica - From ‘the first 10 feet’ on the farm to ‘the last 10 feet’ at Starbucks stores, and at key points in between, women have always played a crucial role in the coffee business and its future. Starbucks has a long history of working with coffee and tea origin communities to address their most critical needs. 

For this reason, within the framework of International Women's Day, Starbucks is proud to reaffirm its unwavering commitment to gender equality, in all aspects of its business, and the empowerment of women in communities. Further to this, The Starbucks Foundation – together with Bean Voyage and Glasswing International – today celebrates the launch of two programs for women farmers in Costa Rica.

Currently, 59% of partners in Costa Rica are women. Likewise, leadership in the market exhibits significant female representation, with 64% women in leadership positions, including roles in the support team, store managers and supervisors.

“From the heart of our operations to the communities in which we are present, we are committed to the advancement and equality of women. On this International Women's Day, we renew our commitment to work tirelessly to create a world where all women have equal opportunities to prosper and reach their maximum potential,” said María José Gutiérrez, Marketing Manager of Starbucks Costa Rica.

Market & Global Impact

Aligned with these fundamental values, in 2018 The Starbucks Foundation set an ambitious goal of empowering 250,000 women and girls in coffee-, tea- and cocoa- growing communities by 2025. However, thanks to strategic partnerships with non-profit organizations worldwide, this goal was achieved in 2022, three years ahead of schedule. Driven by this success and a belief in the transformative impact of female empowerment, The Starbucks Foundation has now set a new goal: to positively impact 1 million women and girls in these communities by 2030.

The Starbucks Foundation’s 2024 Origin Grants for Costa Rica include:

  • Bean Voyage (Resilient Communities Initiative) will equip 250 smallholder women coffee farmers in Costa Rica with training, peer mentorship and seed grants to establish resilient businesses and break out of food insecurity.
  • Glasswing International (Seeds of Change) willprovide 1,000 women and girls in coffee-growing communities with spaces for personal development, strengthen leadership and economic opportunities while positively changing community attitudes and behaviors around gender paradigms.

"We are honored to partner with the Starbucks Foundation on the Seeds of Change Project, which aims to create safe spaces and personal development opportunities for girls and women. We believe that investing in women's development has a multiplier effect and benefits entire communities. By involving the whole family in the learning process, we strengthen the leadership and economic opportunities for women in communities. We sincerely thank The Starbucks Foundation for their support and trust in the potential of these girls and women. Together, we are committed to promoting positive change in gender paradigms," said Laura Sequeira, Country Director at Glasswing International in Costa Rica.

"Through our growing partnership with The Starbucks Foundation, we are excited to amplify our impact in building thriving businesses with smallholder women coffee farmers in Costa Rica. The Resilient Communities Initiative will serve as a catalyst for resilience, fostering thriving businesses, and creating lasting positive change within coffee-producing communities. By offering a bundle of services consisting of training, seed funds, and peer mentorship, we are building a future where every woman has the opportunity to turn her dreams into reality, overcoming challenges with determination and support” said Sunghee Tark, Founder and CEO

Since 2005, The Starbucks Foundation has invested over $25 million through its Origin Grants program, making a difference in the lives of women, their families and their communities through programs that promote women’s leadership, create economic opportunities and expand access to clean water and sanitation (WASH) for women and girls across Africa, Asia and Latin America.

To learn more about The Starbucks Foundation’s Origin Grants program, visit: https://stories.starbucks.com/stories/the-starbucks-foundation/

About The Starbucks Foundation

The Starbucks Foundation strengthens humanity by transforming lives across the world, with a focus on enabling community resiliency and prosperity and uplifting communities affected by disaster. Established in 1997, The Starbucks Foundation is a Section 501(c)(3) charitable organization under U.S. law. 

About Bean Voyage

Founded in 2016, Bean Voyage is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit operating in Costa Rica and Mexico with a mission to build thriving businesses with smallholder women coffee farmers. Bean Voyage provides training, peer mentorship, seed funds, and global market access. To date, the organization has impacted 950+ farmers, fostering resilience and prosperity in coffee producing communities.

About Glasswing International
Glasswing’s mission is to address the root causes and consequences of violence and poverty through education and health programs that empower youth and communities, and strengthen public systems. Through grassroots, evidence-based programming, and cross-sector alliances, Glasswing creates opportunities for children and youth – local changemakers – to thrive. Since 2007, Glasswing has impacted over 3 million people’s lives, with more than 545,800 participants in our education initiatives, close to 511,600 participants in our health initiatives, and over 150,000 volunteers mobilized. For more information, visit: www.glasswing.org.