Solidarity AccorHotels and Lotus House, united for women empowerment!
The Lotus House, an American NGO dedicated to improving the lives of women and youth experiencing homelessness, is a warm, welcoming place that helps people without resources to develop. Solidarity AccorHotels supports its Barista training programme, "Lotus House Barista Bar", targeting some 40 women in Lotus House. Lindy is one of them and has come a long way since stepping into the NGO and her training... A look back on a successful experience, thanks to an iron will:
The first steps in the charity...
Let us look back a few years: Lindy, a young American teenage girl in high school, found herself living in the streets due to complicated family circumstances - her father made her leave his home with no place to stay. She was then taken in at the Lotus House, which gave her a roof, a stable environment and a very comprehensive social support. Pushed by the NGO's supervisors, Lindy worked hard and passed her GED (General Educational Development), a certificate of secondary school skills equivalence that can be prepared outside traditional secondary school.
Professional training, a springboard toward employment
She then decided to learn the Barista Coffee making trade and joined the "Barista Bar" programme in order to acquire professional skills and become self-supporting. Sharleen, her resource coordinator, remembers: "Lindy was very hard-working as she was both enrolled in college and participating in the barista program at the same time. She was dedicated to her success and would not allow her circumstances to become a barrier in receiving education and employment."
In order to hone her skills, Lindy did a two-week internship at the Lotus House Barista Bar and with this experience in hand began to look for employment. The Lotus House team supported her by organising interview simulations and getting for her suitable professional clothing. After sending out a few résumés, Starbucks got in touch with her and decided to hire her full-time: a true success story for the young woman who dreamt of becoming independent and self-supporting!
Today, Lindy has her own apartment. Proud of her journey, she told us: "When I first got to the Lotus House, I had no idea what to expect. Lotus House did not just give me options but pushed me to think about what choice would be best for me and my future. I have already accomplished some good things but I know that the path is still long."
Solidarity AccorHotels and the Central America, North America and the Caribbean Management Team are pleased to support the vocational training actions of the Lotus House, transforming lives and empowering women facing great difficulties.