Young Adults

Supporting young people through their transition to adulthood

When young people transition to adulthood, they enter a critical time where the decisions they make, and the systems they encounter, will directly affect their economic prosperity and agency for decades to come.

That’s why we work to advance opportunities for 16- to 24-year-olds to access, forge and sustain pathways to fulfilling lives, particularly emphasizing the experiences of Black and Indigenous People(s) and/or those whose backgrounds and identities are adversely impacted by historic systems of marginalization.

Building on the knowledge, network and insights gained from our grantmaking to date, we’ve identified four broad priorities based on their potential for impact, their interdependence and the opportunity for innovation and philanthropic impact. These are:  

  • Enhancing efforts to meet basic needs so young people can focus their valuable time and resources on educational and professional opportunities.
  • Increasing and improving navigation supports to connect young people to the diverse education and career pathways available to them.
  • Building social capital to boost a young person’s opportunities for success.
  • Changing employer practice around hiring, support and advancement to make opportunities attainable and accessible to all young people.
Food and housing insecurities are plaguing college students and influencing their ability to retain and graduate. The #RealCollege survey found that 45% of respondents were food insecure in the prior 30 days; 56% of respondents were housing insecure in the previous year; and 17% of respondents were homeless in the previous year.
In today’s labor market, over 50% of jobs are acquired through a social tie. Career exposure, mentorship and robust professional networks are crucial for young people to start and continue on a path to career success.
Twenty-four million frontline workers face little to no upward career mobility and one-third of these workers are under age 35.
Food and housing insecurities are plaguing college students and influencing their ability to retain and graduate. The #RealCollege survey found that 45% of respondents were food insecure in the prior 30 days; 56% of respondents were housing insecure in the previous year; and 17% of respondents were homeless in the previous year.
In today’s labor market, over 50% of jobs are acquired through a social tie. Career exposure, mentorship and robust professional networks are crucial for young people to start and continue on a path to career success.
Twenty-four million frontline workers face little to no upward career mobility and one-third of these workers are under age 35.
Food and housing insecurities are plaguing college students and influencing their ability to retain and graduate. The #RealCollege survey found that 45% of respondents were food insecure in the prior 30 days; 56% of respondents were housing insecure in the previous year; and 17% of respondents were homeless in the previous year.
In today’s labor market, over 50% of jobs are acquired through a social tie. Career exposure, mentorship and robust professional networks are crucial for young people to start and continue on a path to career success.
Twenty-four million frontline workers face little to no upward career mobility and one-third of these workers are under age 35.

FEATURED INITIATIVES

National Service Challenge

The National Service Challenge supports national service as a pathway of opportunity for young people, especially people of color and young adults from low-income households. Recognizing the innovation happening instates across the country, the goal of the Challenge is to seed innovations through state service commissions that re-envision how commissions and the AmeriCorps federal agency can better serve BIPOC and low-income young adult AmeriCorps members through programmatic and policy changes.

To champion this initiative, the Foundation has invested $3.5 million to support the work in eight states: Colorado, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, and Washington.

100,000 Opportunities Initiative

Millions of youth would like to be working but are unable or unsure how to take the first steps. The 100,000 Opportunities Initiative helps them prepare for and land their first jobs. With millions of job openings in the country, employers are looking to hire strong talent. Answering that call, the 100,000 Opportunities Initiative connects employers with young job seekers.

The 100,000 Opportunities Initiative impact to date:

  • 200,000+ opportunity youth hired in entry-level jobs since 2015
  • 300+ community-based organizations supporting youth success
  • 55+ corporate partners working to hire and retain opportunity youth
  • 47% of participants at Opportunity Youth Job fairs were hired on the spot

GRANTEE SPOTLIGHT

Generation connects unemployed and underemployed people to life-changing jobs, from preparation and placement to mentorship and support along their career pathway. With a commitment to collaboration and learning, coupled with strong local and national partnerships, Generation expects to grow from serving 1,000 people per year to 90,000 by 2030.

The SkillUp Coalition helps COVID-impacted workers develop the knowledge, confidence, skills, and training to land in-demand jobs in high-growth industries. Since its launch a year ago, the coalition has grown to more than 60 organizations, including training and education providers, tech firms, employers, and philanthropies, and has supported 400,000 workers through 400 best-in-class training programs.

Basta works to create a bridge of opportunity between employers and first-generation college goers of color to increase knowledge workforce diversity at all levels. They actively work with employers to access untapped talent and work with graduates on their job search.

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INVESTOR SPOTLIGHT

Slauson & Co. is a Los Angeles-based venture capital firm working to democratize access to entrepreneurship by bridging the gap between untapped founders – historically overlooked by the traditional venture ecosystem - and the right capital and resources required to create sustainable equity and economic inclusion. The firm established Off Slauson as its non-profit arm to support entrepreneurs beyond the investments made by the fund. Through Friends & Family, a 12-week accelerator program, Off Slauson provided 20 companies across the country with $20,000 in non-dilutive capital as well as the opportunity to learn from some of the most successful entrepreneurs and investors in the country.

Grid110 is an economic and community development non-profit dedicated to creating clearer pathways to success for early-stage entrepreneurs in Los Angeles. Their mission is to foster the most thriving, inviting and inclusive community for entrepreneurs by making the entrepreneurial path more equitable, inclusive and accessible. Through their no cost, no equity accelerator programs, Grid110 provides founders with a growing community of fellow entrepreneurs, expert mentorship, and crucial resources. It has supported 215 companies that have raised more than $60 million since its creation in 2015. Ninety-four percent of companies supported by Grid110 are led by women and entrepreneurs of color.

INVESTOR SPOTLIGHT

INVESTOR SPOTLIGHT

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