Niagara Cares, the philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling, announced a $175,000 grant to Merit America, a national nonprofit organization that creates pathways to family-sustaining careers for Americans stuck in low-wage jobs.
This grant enables Niagara to hire new program participants for life-sustaining tech careers at no cost to the eligible learners who enroll and complete the program.
Through its products and the work of Niagara Cares, Niagara Bottling is committed to promoting healthy hydration and enhancing the lives of families across the nation. In line with these values, the company recognizes the pressing need to address the challenges faced by the more than 53 million working adults – nearly half of the U.S. workforce – who do not earn a living wage. The growing wealth gap and barriers to education disproportionately affecting communities of color have hindered economic progress for many Americans, preventing them from accessing better career opportunities.
To tackle these issues and create tangible pathways to career mobility, Niagara has partnered with Merit America. Designed to address this challenge by building new pathways to career mobility at scale, Merit America offers fast, flexible, and comprehensive training programs that consist of technical training, career coaching, interview preparation, resume building and job placement.
“Through our partnership with Merit America, we are breaking down barriers and providing life-changing opportunities for the workforce, empowering participants to secure rewarding roles in tech,” said Ann Canela, director of corporate giving for Niagara. “This partnership is unique for Niagara as it creates an opportunity for our Team Members to support participants by engaging with them in mock interviews and also gives us an opportunity to hire learners into Niagara.”
“Our partnership with Niagara exemplifies how the vast world of tech extends its reach into unexpected industries, such as food and beverage,” said Merit America Co-Founder & Co-CEO Connor Diemand-Yauman. “At Merit America, we take immense pride in unveiling these hidden opportunities, empowering talented, hardworking individuals in low-wage roles to secure a new, rewarding career.”
The partnership between Merit America and Niagara will enable 25 eligible participants to enroll in Merit America’s IT Support, Data Analytics and UX Design career tracks. Niagara or others will then be able to hire those who complete the program, offering them a life-sustaining career in tech at no cost.
About Merit America:
Merit America is a national nonprofit preparing workers stuck in low-wage roles for family-sustaining careers at scale. Named by the New York Times as “the hybrid future of training programs for the disadvantaged,” we offer fast and flexible training and job search programs that work for working adults and are aligned to the most in-demand roles in the fastest-growing sectors of the U.S. economy. Founded in 2018, we now serve thousands of working learners across the country, driving an average annual wage gain of nearly $24,000 within 3 or more months for those who complete the program. We are on track to drive $1B in wage gains by 2025.
For more information, visit meritamerica.org.
About Niagara Cares:
Niagara Cares is the philanthropic arm of Niagara Bottling, LLC, and is the heart of what we do and who we are. We believe in supporting the communities where we live and work through a spirit of giving back in ways both big and small. Making a meaningful difference for our Team Members, consumers and communities through volunteering, product donations, disaster relief and other actions has been our priority for over 60 years. For more information, visit niagarawater.com/niagara-cares.
About Niagara Bottling:
Niagara Bottling, LLC has been family owned and operated since 1963. Headquartered in Diamond Bar, Calif., Niagara operates bottling facilities throughout the U.S. and Mexico. As a leading beverage manufacturer in the U.S., Niagara Bottling works closely with some of the largest beverage brands, retailers, grocers, and club and convenience stores throughout the country. Niagara produces a variety of beverages including bottled water, sparkling, vitamin and flavored water, teas, sports drinks, ready-to-drink coffee, protein drinks, and non-dairy milk products. For more information, visit niagarawater.com.