Dollars That Help. Voices That Inspire.

Dollars That Help. Voices That Inspire.

Michael Piraino, CEO of National CASA

It is inspiring to see corporate leaders standing up for human service needs.

At a recent annual shareholders’ meeting, Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz spoke of the ever-increasing gap between federal and state funding and the need for social services: “We are going to see cuts in social services that we haven’t seen since the Great Depression. The gap between haves and the have-nots is going to get wider and wider,” said Schultz.1

What I like about Mr. Schultz’s comments is that he doesn’t shy away from the reality that fewer dollars mean fewer services for people in need. In fact, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, 30 states have projected FY 2013 budget shortfalls totaling $49 billion.2

As funding gets tighter or disappears altogether, nonprofits like CASA for Children are feeling the pinch. How will we narrow the gap? We all know that corporations cannot bear the full financial burden of making up for government funding cutbacks. But they can step up and do their part.

I also like the fact that a corporate CEO is willing to speak up for people in need. And Shultz is not alone in this. Jewelers for Children—made up of leaders in the jewelry industry—has supported children’s causes since its founding in 1999. In fact, support from the jewelry industry has helped over 5,000 foster children.

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