Too many families still do not have jobs, earned income, or assets. Typically, the working poor are struggling with substantial debt and have a tenuous hold on jobs that are not providing sufficient income, security, benefits, or career advancement options. The challenges of unreliable and expensive transportation, healthcare and childcare add to this instability. Additionally, low-wage jobs are often the first affected by downturns in the national or regional economy.
Work is at the center of the Casey Foundation's Center for Family Economic Success (CFES) approach. A family-supporting job with benefits—particularly healthcare benefits—can make all the difference between a family that is thriving and moving up the economic ladder, or one that is just surviving. This approach weaves together myriad workforce development strategies, including job training, job readiness, placement, retention and advancement, and workforce supports. Casey's workforce development initiatives include:
- The Jobs Initiative - Casey's eight-year effort in six cities to connect inner-city young men and women to family-supporting jobs in the regional economy and to improve the way urban labor market systems work for low-income, low-skilled workers.
- National Fund for Workforce Solutions - a five-year funder collaborative to strengthen and expand high-impact workforce development partnerships across the country.