We believe every Californian – regardless of who they are or where they live – should have the opportunity to create a better life for themselves and their families. Yet discrimination and exclusion – in policies and practices – have blocked opportunities for many individuals and communities.
Resources and solutions to address the issues of today are important but not enough; we must level the playing field to help millions of Californians overcome historical barriers and institutional obstacles to prosperity.
While California represents the hopes and successes that people have pursued for generations, too many Californians find themselves working harder and harder for less and less.
In 2018, we commissioned a survey of California workers and found that millions are working hard to get ahead, but they’re facing multiple barriers to financial stability and are living on the brink. There is overwhelming evidence of the need for greater economic opportunities in California.
We are working to achieve a singular goal: A California where all low-income workers have the power to advance economically. To reach this goal, change must happen at the individual, community, and state level. These changes are interdependent.
To support those creating opportunities for low-wage workers, we have a portfolio of grantmaking, including two large, multiyear initiatives.
Better Careers supports organizations that connect low-income Californians to good jobs with family-sustaining wages and advancement opportunities.
Fair Work invests in initiatives that support and engage low-wage workers to secure their wages and protect their rights.
Read more about all Our Grantmaking.
As part of our focus, we partnered with local nonprofits to speak directly with young people and families who are working but struggling with poverty. In Community Listening Sessions held across the state in 2016, we heard firsthand the hopes, fears, challenges, and dreams of Californians. Our 2018 survey of California workers underscored the perspectives we heard during these listening sessions.