Grant from the Schultz Family Foundation to support programs connecting military spouses to career and networking opportunities

Washington, DC – Blue Star Families has been selected as the recipient of a $900,000 grant from the Schultz Family Foundation to connect military spouses with employers and careers. Spouses of military service members possess a unique ability to thrive in stressful environments and overcome challenges, but as many as 58 percent of military spouses struggle with employment challenges. The grant expands upon a previous commitment by the Schultz Family Foundation to Blue Star Families and aims to connect 1,250 military spouses with jobs over the next two years.

“Our research shows that military spouse unemployment costs our nation nearly $1 billion a year,” said Kathy Roth-Douquet, CEO and Founder of Blue Star Families. “The Schultz Family Foundation’s investment in Blue Star Families’ program to connect military spouses to careers and employment will not only help our military families keep pace with the ever rising cost of living, but will contribute to a stronger American economy and a more financially secure workforce.”

Military families relocate approximately every three years, making it difficult for spouses to build the networks essential to discovering job opportunities before transferring to another duty station. With this investment from the Schultz Family Foundation, Blue Star Families will place career employment managers in Jacksonville, FL and Camp Pendleton, CA. This direct job placement support will leverage existing networking opportunities to connect more military spouses directly to hiring opportunities, skills training programs, and higher education. Expansion is planned to seven additional locations by 2018.

“Veterans and their families have sacrificed a lot to keep our country safe and it’s important to support them however we can,” said Elizabeth Willett, senior program manager at the Schultz Family Foundation. “Helping military spouses find meaningful jobs is one very effective way of stabilizing the family and there’s no organization better suited than Blue Star Families to do this.”

The Schultz Family Foundation partners with and funds organizations that unlock potential in populations facing temporary barriers to success. Blue Star Families has made economic opportunity such as employment for military spouses a major focus of its efforts to support military families. Together, the organizations are working toward a goal of ensuring every military spouse can find a meaningful career.

To learn more about Blue Star Families and its efforts to connect military spouses with careers, visit bluestarfam.org.

ABOUT BLUE STAR FAMILIES
Blue Star Families builds communities that support military families by connecting research and data to programs and solutions, including career development tools, local community events for families, and caregiver support. Since its inception in 2009, Blue Star Families has engaged tens of thousands of volunteers and served more than 1.5 million military family members. Blue Star Families believes that all military families should be able to serve and simultaneously build thriving and healthy families. With Blue Star Families, military families can find answers to their challenges anywhere they are. Visit bluestarfam.org for more information.

ABOUT THE SCHULTZ FAMILY FOUNDATION
The Schultz Family Foundation, established in 1996 by Howard and Sheri Schultz, creates pathways of opportunity for populations facing barriers to success. The Foundation invests in innovative solutions and partnerships that unlock people’s potential, and strengthen our businesses, communities, and our nation. In March 2014, the Schultz Family Foundation launched Onward Veterans, a national initiative that empowers post-9/11and their families to successfully transition to civilian life. In May, 2015, it launched “Onward Youth”, a similar initiative focused on “opportunity youth”, 16-24 year olds who are out of school and not working. For more information about the Foundation and its work, visit schultzfamilyfoundation.org or follow them on Twitter @SchultzFamilyFd.