Bacardi Takes on Youth Unemployment in the Hospitality Industry

Even in strong economic times, employment remains a concern for many individuals. In fact, our 2018 Purpose Study found that domestic job growth was the number one issue Americans wanted companies to address – superseding topics like access to healthcare and cost of higher education. Now, one company is tackling unemployment that is prevalent in a specific industry – creating job training and career-focused opportunities for young workers.

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Spirits company Bacardi is launching a new initiative to address youth unemployment and an industry-wide shortage of skilled bartenders. The program, called Shake Your Future, is a bartending and mixology training program “that aims to secure the futures of young people within the hospitality industry.” After a successful pilot in France, Bacardi is now rolling out the program in Italy, France and Spain in the coming months – and to 12 major cities globally over the next three years. Participants of the program join a 10-week training course developed in partnership with the European Bartender School and receive an internationally recognized diploma at its conclusion. To ensure graduates’ success, Bacardi has recruited a growing number of bars and restaurants to pledge their support to Shake Your Future by providing employment opportunities to those who have completed the program. Francis Debeuckelaere, Europe Regional President for Bacardi, shared why the program is so critical in a recent press release, “Shake Your Future will change the lives of potentially thousands of young adults around the world. Across Europe, our teams have witnessed first-hand the scale of unemployment among young adults and we are committed to making a difference.”

The Shake Your Future program addresses a root issue within the hospitality industry – a deficiency of skilled bartenders. However, through the program, Bacardi is not only providing a solution to this sector-specific problem, but also ensuring the industry it operates in continues to thrive by ensuring the next generation of bartenders have the training and available career options available to be successful.