At UpTogether, we believe every person is an expert in their own life.
After listening to and learning from thousands of families over the past 20 years, we know people can and will move up together when they are recognized for their initiative, supported for their self-determination and where access to resources is determined by strengths, not deficits.
But too many systems in our society have been set up to create communities that are financially under-resourced and prevent the people who live there from moving up, both economically and socially. Those systems create governmental and charitable policies and practices that overlook:
- The power of communities to create their own solutions and lift people into the middle class, as communities have done for hundreds of years
- The creativity of families in designing ways to stretch their limited incomes and invest in themselves
- The ways access to capital, without outrageous interest rates or strings attached, can fuel the initiatives families are already taking to accomplish their goals and dreams
That’s why together, with our members and partners, we are championing a nationwide movement where every person is recognized for their strengths and contributions, and have what they need to thrive.
We don’t define community. Our members do.
At UpTogether, we recognize that everyone defines community in their own way, but no matter the definition, it’s rooted in shared values and aspirations, connectedness and care for the collective.
Who are the UpTogether Community members?
UpTogether members are parents and caregivers. They are entrepreneurs and community organizers. College graduates and homeowners. Boomers and Millennials, and much, much more, all working together to accomplish the goals they have set for themselves, both individually and collectively. There is a richness in the diversity their lived experiences bring to the UpTogether Community.
When it comes to race and ethnicity, UpTogether Community members are more similar. Our membership is reflective of the reality we face in America with Black, Indigenous and other people of color (BIPOC), experiencing low wealth and poverty at a disproportionate rate. This is due to systemic racism in the form of discriminatory policies and practices, and not individual behaviors or cultural characteristics. With this in mind, and a focus on centering equity, the overwhelming majority of UpTogether Community members are also part of the BIPOC community.
Want to learn more about our members,
how they use their UpTogether investments and what they’re doing in their communities?
We recognize, highlight and invest in the ingenuity and entrepreneurship of people in historically undervalued communities and partner with government and philanthropy to do the same.
All people in the United States are seen and invested in for their strengths and are able to build their social and financial assets.
We honor the strengths and initiatives of people living in historically undervalued communities and promote the role social networks within these communities play in helping people accomplish their goals and achieve long-term socioeconomic mobility.
We test and scale strategies for systems adoption of a strength-based approach to accelerate socioeconomic mobility for people living at or below the poverty line in the U.S.
We center the lived experiences of families in historically undervalued communities and engage the knowledge, experience and perspectives of our board, partners and staff to build and grow a strength-based approach to end poverty.
We are committed to being an anti-racist organization and we promote anti-racist policies that eliminate the racial wealth divide.
We acknowledge that leadership is not based on a title and honor the many forms in which it appears. We celebrate leadership that embodies all of our organizational values, driving us to act against the dominating deficit-based approach to fighting poverty.
We trust that people living at or below the poverty line know what’s best and are capable of making decisions for themselves and their families.