Social & Economic Mobility
Empower hardworking residents to move to financial stability and have a strong economic foundation to break the cycle of poverty.
Why It Matters
Economic mobility measures movement up or down the income ladder throughout a person’s life, which can be affected by one’s parents. Social mobility, or social capital, refers to the connections, networks, or relationships among people and the value that arises from them that can be accessed or mobilized to help individuals succeed in life. The lack of social mobility for certain individuals can lead to inequality of opportunities.
The growing wealth gap between families at the top and bottom of the income distribution raises concerns about the ability of today’s disadvantaged to work their way up the economic ladder and break the boundary of their social class. According to the 2020 ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) report, 50% of households in Broward are living on or below the poverty line. Individuals who are underemployed are unable to earn enough money to meet financial obligations. Failure to pay mortgage payments or to pay rent may lead to homelessness through foreclosure or eviction. It also increases susceptibility to malnutrition, illness, mental stress, and loss of self-esteem. All of these challenges may contribute to more significant mental and physical health issues.
According to CountyOffice.org March 2022 reporting, Broward County has an unemployment rate of 6.6% compared to Florida’s 6.3%. Those with disabilities have an even greater rate at 15.2% in Broward County compared to 14.2% across Florida. In addition, the 2020 Urban League of Broward County’s State of Black Broward report indicates that poverty among Black/African American and Hispanic/Latino residents had decreased since 2021 but these same residents experienced significantly higher poverty levels as compared to White residents. In order to combat these statistics, all residents from any community must be positioned to grow economically. This includes having access to post-secondary and financial education opportunities and resources to change negative economic outcomes.
What We Are Looking For
In the Florida Chamber’s “Blueprint for Florida’s Future, Florida 2030” a key target is to reach 80% of Florida’s workforce equipped with essential employability skills. The Foundation understands the need to connect all individuals, including seniors, LGBTQ and special needs residents, to the financial knowledge, skills, resources, and experience they need to close the wealth gap. The Foundation seeks to advance individuals by addressing these areas:
- Talent Pipeline — Build a stronger pipeline of diverse talent and fuel local economic growth by reducing the skills gap and meet demands for workforce talent through workforce training to deliver tools, knowledge, and resources that will enhance an individual's contribution to a company.
- Remove Barriers — Break through systemic barriers for accessing enhanced economic options, opportunities, and outcomes including transportation, childcare, attainable housing, technology to enable upward mobility and self-sufficiency.
- Future Financial Success — Provide pathways for underserved individuals and families to achieve financial independence, improve financial literacy, increase savings, foster investment and encourage entrepreneurship opportunities.
Broward College was awarded the $1M Be Bold Prize for a two-year pilot to expand Broward Up with the launch of EMPLOYS, which is designed to provide support services, education, and job matching for chronic and underemployed residents in six Broward zip codes.