We invest in the following ways to increase work, educational and job-training opportunities that lead to stable careers for adults and youth throughout the country:

The Foundation aims to create new opportunities for low-income adults and parents to build their skills, get into the workforce, move forward in their careers and become financially secure through several strategies:

More low-income workers are acquiring the training and skills to earn more income and advance to jobs in high-demand sectors with career potential:

More employers are engaged and connected to low-income workers with industry-recognized credentials:

  • More than 4,000 employers in health care, construction and manufacturing in 32 regions participate in industry partnerships that help ensure job training matches industry needs and promote better policies and business practices for workers and jobseekers.

More families are accessing benefits and support programs that supplement their income:

  • More than 27 million low- and moderate-income people received the federal earned income tax credit in 2012, bringing in more than $62 billion to individuals and families.
  • The National Employment Law Project and state-based partners expanded the Unemployment Insurance work-sharing program in 14 states, helping tens of thousands of workers supplement reduced income from cut-back hours. 
  • Nearly 6.5 million teens and young adults are neither in school nor in the workforce. What can we do to keep youth from veering toward chronic unemployment as adults and failing to gain the skills employers need? Youth and Work highlights the national challenge of youth unemployment — and solutions to reverse this trend.

  • In 2011, 47.5 million people — including 23.5 million children — lived in families with a working adult but still considered low-income. Low-Income Working Families: The Growing Economic Gap describes the challenges facing low-wage workers.

  • Paid Family Leave: Strengthening Families and Our Future looks at the effects of maternal employment and parental leave policies on child health, cognitive and emotional development and the health of parental relationships. It also includes research-based recommendations to advance paid family leave policies.

  • Discover big ideas for job creation to help low-income, low-skilled individuals in the post-recession economy.

  • Although immigrants suffered greater job losses than citizens during the recession, they also enjoyed greater employment growth during the recovery. Hit Hard but Bouncing Back focuses on the employment fluctuation of immigrants versus U.S.-born workers during the Great Recession and recovery.

  • Spotlight on Poverty and Opportunity provides timely information and resources about issues affecting people and families living in poverty.

  • Collective Impact for Opportunity Youth offers guidance on launching a collaborative effort to provide new options for disconnected young people.

  • The National Earned Income Tax Credit Outreach Campaign provides resources for organizations and programs to promote the earned income and child tax credits and free tax filing assistance for low- and moderate-income workers.

  • The National Fund for Workforce Solutions’ Workforce Partnership Guidance Tool illustrates effective strategies and operational activities associated with high-performing workforce partnerships.

  • How can we help individuals with criminal records overcome obstacles to employment? Discover proven and promising practices to improving reentry and employment outcomes for individuals released from prison or jail — or who are beginning community supervision.

From the Blog

Lisa Hamilton from the Annie E. Casey Foundation and Sarah Currid of Samaschool

The Future of Workforce Development? Samaschool is Thinking Gig

Gig jobs are on the rise. It’s an evolution that Sarah Currid, managing director of Samaschool, knows well. The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Lisa Hamilton recently spoke with Currid about this work and innovative ways to help low-income workers leverage gig jobs to build a brighter, stronger future for their families.

Read More

A new episode of CaseyCast takes listeners to Adams County, Colorado — one of the fastest growing counties in the state in both population and employment. It’s a community where families face many challenges, including higher rates of child poverty, single motherhood and teen births. It’s also home to an innovative effort that is helping local women, ages 18 to 24, train and work as certified digital interviewers. 

Building Paths to Economic Opportunity

Video: Opening Doors for America's Young People

Millions of U.S. teens and young adults are neither in school nor working. We and others are seeking ways to reconnect these young people to educational and job opportunities, creating the next generation of workers and parents.

Video: Partnering With Community Colleges

Based on a nationally recognized model, the Maryland Integrated Basic Education and Skills Training program helps adults complete college occupational programs and earn credentials, training them for jobs and careers and developing skills for life.

Video: Removing Obstacles to Employment

Through social enterprises, California nonprofit REDF is creating jobs and opportunities for people who face some of the greatest barriers to finding work.