The FINANCIAL -- Marriott International will expand job opportunities for disadvantaged youth across the globe by providing education and on-the-job training through the Youth Career Initiative (YCI) program. In addition, a $250,000 grant has been made by The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation, along with a separate $250,000 challenge grant, to help expand the program into several countries.
Accepting a “World Savers” corporate social responsibility award from Condé Nast Traveler today, J.W. Marriott, Jr., Chairman and CEO of Marriott International, said that the challenge grant will encourage guests and other hotel companies to support this program and any contributions will be eligible for the dollar-for-dollar match by the Foundation.
The Youth Career Initiative program provides life-changing alternatives for young people from challenging backgrounds,” said Mr. Marriott, “and by introducing these young people to hospitality, we hope that some of them will decide to pursue a career in the industry.”
Through the YCI program, 1,600 young people are already on paths toward promising careers in Australia, Brazil, Poland, Romania, Thailand, Jordan, Mexico, Ethiopia, Indonesia and the Philippines. The program combines six months of classroom training with on-the-job experience in the hotel industry. Marriott will help introduce the youth employability program in Egypt, Costa Rica, India, Vietnam, and the Caribbean, and eventually further into Latin America and Southeast Asia.
“This program has helped me see life differently,” said recent YCI graduate Dumitru Marius, a 22-year old server at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in Bucharest, Romania. “I learned that if I work hard enough to get something, there is a chance for me too.”
In the October issue of Condé Nast Traveler, Marriott invites readers to participate in an online auction at ebay.com/JWMarriottHotelsforCharity for week-long stays at 20 J.W. Marriott hotels around the world. Proceeds will benefit Youth Career Initiative and will be eligible for the challenge grant match provided by The J. Willard and Alice S. Marriott Foundation.