Social Networks Make a Difference

Family Economic Success

Posted January 2, 2006
By the Annie E. Casey Foundation
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This report is the fourth installment in a five-part series devoted to sharing the Annie E. Casey Foundation's successes in utilizing social networks to improve the lives of children, families and communities. It opens with a focused discussion on the roles that social connections play in supporting both vulnerable households and family economic success. By examining efforts already underway as part of the Foundation’s seminal Making Connections initiative, experts identify three areas — asset building, jobs and the Earned Income Tax Credit — where social networking strategies hold great promise in aiding America’s distressed families.

Findings & Stats

Statements & Quotations

Key Takeaway

Current strategies for serving America’s most vulnerable families aren’t working.

America’s neediest families are often socially unplugged and hyper-focused on navigating their next most pressing crisis. As a result, these families are notoriously difficult to engage in aid programs, according to research. One solution? Invest in social networks — the power of peers, loved ones and trusted others — to help bolster a family’s involvement in services and interventions.