Tag Archive | social enterprise

Together, We Can Be #ANationThatWorks

By Tara Maguire, Workforce Research & Policy Fellow, National Initiatives on Poverty & Economic Opportunity
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What’s it going to take to end chronic unemployment and poverty for all Americans? What’s it going to take to make us #ANationThatWorks for everyone? On October 25 through 27 in Chicago, we invite you tackle these tough questions at our national conference, A Nation That Works: What’s It Going to Take? There, you’ll encounter a wide range of content lifting up solutions to end chronic unemployment, supporting the adoption of best and promising employment practices for the people who need them most, and advancing policy solutions and systems change for addressing chronic unemployment and poverty. We’ll also highlight efforts in Chicago and across the country to improve job quality for low-wage workers. Excited? We are! Read on to learn more about what to expect at #ANationThatWorks.

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Presents with a Purpose: 2015’s Social Enterprise Holiday Shopping Guide

By Leiha Edmonds, Research and Policy Assistant, National Initiatives on Poverty & Economic Opportunity

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As we enter the holiday season, we once again encourage you to give gifts that give back by shopping at social enterprises that help individuals facing barriers to employment get back to work. For the 2015 social enterprise holiday shopping guide, we spotlight a diverse group of businesses that use their sales revenue to fund job training programs and support a larger social justice mission. From coffee to books to granola bars, you’ll find great gift options for friends and family. Take a look, learn about social enterprise, and find thoughtful gifts that support job training this holiday season!

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“I Believed in My Vision:” TransTech Empowers, Educates, & Employs the Trans Community

By Caitlin C. Schnur, Coordinator, National Initiatives on Poverty & Economic Opportunity

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Angelica Ross, the founder of TransTech in Chicago, calls herself an accidental advocate. “I got into this work as an advocate for myself,” explains Miss Ross, a transwoman of color whose year-old social enterprise prepares trans people for careers in creative design and technology. “When I was younger, I was really just trying to get by and work a job. None of the LGBTQ organizations that were focused on marriage were advocating for what I needed—safe and stable employment opportunities.”

While the transgender movement may have reached a tipping point, there’s still a lot of work to be done around advancing employment and economic opportunity for the trans community. According to the National Transgender Discrimination Survey, trans people experience twice the rate of unemployment and are nearly four times more likely to live in extreme poverty than the general population. By empowering, educating, and employing trans people—and especially trans youth—TransTech addresses these issues head on. For LGBT Pride Month, National Initiatives chatted with Miss Ross about her vision for TransTech, why social capital is key to economic empowerment, and employment as restorative justice.

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Oprima-1: A Creative Social Enterprise Strategy Connecting Immigrants to Employment

By David T. Applegate, Research and Policy Assistant, National Initiatives on Poverty & Economic Opportunity

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Founded in 1997 in Chicago’s historic Pilsen neighborhood, PODER serves Chicago’s immigrant community by providing free comprehensive English education in conjunction with an innovative social enterprise and job training. The National Initiatives team recently had the opportunity to chat with PODER’s executive director, Daniel Loftus, about their social enterprise, Oprima-1, and the critical work they’re doing to empower immigrants to build new lives in Chicago.

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Four Transitional Jobs Programs that Are Helping Women Succeed in the Workforce

By Annika Yates, Communications Coordinator, Heartland Alliance Policy and Research Division owmen

Women face poverty at disproportionate rates. According to the National Women’s Law Center, nearly 60% of poor adults are women, and nearly six in ten poor children live in families headed by women. In honor of Women’s History Month, we’re highlighting four transitional jobs programs that are working to even the score by helping women leave poverty behind through employment.

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