We see it as a "virtuous cycle" in which everyone wins: our associates whose career goals we help achieve; the businesses who fuel their growth with our associates' hard work and skills; and the communities that grow stronger as a result of their individual and corporate citizens' success.
As an industry-leading employer of thousands of associates from a wide-range of socioeconomic backgrounds, we are keenly aware of the impact America's current affordable housing crisis is having on this group. The lower income population finds their budget stretched to the limit to keep a roof over their heads, and even a minor setback, such as a car needing repairs, may be the last straw that puts them out on the street.
The typical homeless person is no longer someone who is mentally or physically incapacitated in some way. A large percentage of today's homeless are hard-working individuals and families who simply had a bit of bad luck. We decided that we should use our corporate clout to help associates get back the home they truly deserve. With an associate assistance program already in place, the Project Home Initiative extended its scope and gave it a facilitative structure.
This is why "Advocating for Our Associates" is our number one core value. Many factors can hinder career advancement, from lack of training to social issues relating to home, family, health or finances. We understand that a holistic approach is the most effective solution. Our assistance efforts aim to provide support at every point, so that both our associates and the entire community can move forward.