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Our Approach

A singular goal unites our work. Listening drives our strategy for impact.

The strategies that drive our approach:

  • A singular goal unites our work: a California where all low-income workers have the power to advance economically.
  • We seek impact on individual, community, and statewide levels.
  • Our initiatives have specific outcomes, timelines, and resources.
  • We develop and adjust initiatives by learning from others.
  • Each initiative invests in core grantees to achieve impact.
  • We seek public and corporate policy change by investing in grantees’ objectives.

Defining success: Pursuing change at the individual, community, and state level

Working Californians will prosper when they:

Earn family-sustaining wages

Can afford to provide for themselves and their families

Are protected at work and paid the wages they are due

Gain the skills and support to advance in their careers

Communities will support the economic success of all their residents when:

Inclusive local economies provide good jobs

Residents understand and influence the economic development priorities in their communities

Strong local organizations empower low-income residents to be leaders in the economic development of their communities’ economies

Community leaders develop economic growth strategies to benefit everyone in their communities

Statewide, sustained change will be possible when:

Public information and data builds support for the economic advancement for low-income workers

Public policies support the needs of low-income Californians

Leaders in government are representative and responsive

Institutions, policies, and practices enable economic advancement and civic participation

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Leveling the playing field

Every Californian deserves the opportunity to create a better life, but discrimination and exclusion have blocked opportunities millions of Californians.

Our Initiative Model

Transformative impact for working Californians

Our grantmaking portfolio is a collection of initiatives with specific outcome goals, timelines, and budgets that, individually and collectively, advance our goals.


Collaborating with others to expand opportunity for Californians

Partnership is a core Irvine value and central to achieving our goals.

Impact Assessment and Learning

Understanding the impact, Informing our grantmaking strategies

How we assess progress, learn, and adjust for greater impact.


Listening and feedback are central to Irvine’s values and strategy

We are committed to listening and learning, and we close the loop by ensuring those we listen to know how we use what we hear.