At-risk youth programs benefit from Seahawks' players time behind espresso machines

SEATTLE -- Recently, a number of Seattle Seahawks stepped in as baristas at Starbucks locations around the city.

The event was considered a success. Not only did it help costumers interact with players form their favorite team, but, more importantly, it also raised $75,000 for Pete Carroll's "A Better Seattle" campaign.

The money raised goes to help launch new job skills training programs for at-risk youth. One of the programs "Alive and Free" pairs outreach workers with youth recovering from violence.

"Alive and Free" program coordinator Honey Jo and program participant Ciera sat down to talk with Q13 FOX's Kaci Aitchison recently. Ciera says while it's fun for coffee lovers to get to see their favorite Hawks, it's the help for the program that is truly important.

Because it was the program that and Honey Jo that stepped forward on what Ciera calls on of the "worst day of her life." During a court appearance where Ciera describes being lost and without help, "Alive and Well" stepped forward.

"I didn't really have nobody to help me or show me the steps to do anything," Ciera said. "And so Honey... she was able to give me a lot of resources."

Honey says since that day, Ciera has grown as a person because she received the help she so desperately needed. Ciera was one of five people to go through the program.

"It's really affirming for me to watch her transformation as she goes forward into adulthood and into life," Honey Jo said.

Now, with the help of "Alive and Free," Ciera has a job at the Starbucks headquarters working in the company's newsroom. Ciera said this never would have been possible with out Alive and Free's help.

"I just know that if I keep doing what I'm doing," Ciera said. "I can do anything I want to do. No matter how hard it is."

This Year "Alive and Free" plans to partner with an auto-body shop in Kent as six local youth go through the job readiness program.

For more on the "A Better Seattle" campaign. Watch the video above. Or, click this link.