Kaimore Career Accelerator for Economic Empowerment
We believe access to the workforce should be egalitarian. Sadly, the real world doesn’t always operate on the principle of equal opportunity. Aspiring workers often face social barriers because of their ethnicity or economic circumstances. To tackle this problem, Kaimore has developed a 16-week development experience filled with financial coaching, workforce training, project-based learning, field work and a final philanthropy project for ambitious individuals to help realize their full potential as community leaders.
Describe the mission of your organization.
Kaimore is a nonprofit aimed at breaking down barriers to economic mobility. The core of our efforts is to provide targeted professional development and financial coaching services for disadvantaged individuals. Through this, we hope to help our clients develop financially sustainable lifestyles through flourishing careers and financial management.
In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?
- Central LA
- East LA
- South LA
- City of Los Angeles
What is the problem that you are seeking to address?
Kaimore seeks to address financial insecurity and unemployment. Access to banks, mortgages, loans, retirement accounts, and good financial advice is critical to establishing long-term financial security. However, over 9 million American households lack a bank account. Some 60 million adults use high-cost lending products, around half of whom are African Americans and Latinos, despite qualifying for standard loan products. Households with poor credit history and lack of emergency savings will spend nearly 10 percent of their income on high-cost credit products. Debts disproportionately impact families and communities of color, hindering economic mobility. Unemployment further exacerbates financial instability. According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, unemployment rate in January 2021 in LA County was 12.7%. Re-employment and job retention will be crucial to rebuilding Los Angeles in the coming years, and Kaimore hopes to be part of the solution and long-term change.
Describe the project, program, or initiative that this grant will support to address the problem identified.
We will host three Career Accelerator Programs focused on addressing low financial literacy and unemployment in marginalized groups with lower socioeconomic backgrounds such as those previously incarcerated or domestic abuse victims. The curriculum integrates introductory courses, case studies, hands on projects, individual assignments, internships, and mentorship opportunities. Weekend bootcamps will cover 1) basic financial coaching on savings, budgeting, banking, taxes, and credit scores and 2) professional development training programs including resume editing, networking, career panels, and utilizing LinkedIn. Over the course of the first half of the program, members will work on case studies that dive deeper into topics of their choice, along with group projects and individual assignments. During the second half of the program, members will conduct fieldworks, participate in internships, or work on individual projects that will help them secure employment in the industry of their choice. During the final 2 weeks, members will use skills learned from the program to host a philanthropic event for their community, benefiting Los Angeles while solidifying their leadership skills. Members from each class will have the opportunity to become mentors for following cohorts and join the growing Kaimore Accelerator alumni network. Ultimately, the Kaimore platform will serve as a bridge to connect those who are in need to who are able to help.
In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?Expand existing project, program, or initiative (expanding and continuing ongoing, successful work)
Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?
- Direct impact
- Indirect impact
Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.
This grant would allow Kaimore to positively impact the lives of those that are underprivileged in Los Angeles. The LA Almanac reported that in December 2020, the unemployment rate in the LA County alone was at 10.7%, around 521,600 individuals. According to the United States Census Bureau, the median income for the city of LA is around $29,000. We are projected to increase the number of clients by 90% by 2023, and we would have the potential to positively influence the lives of almost 1,500 low income clients, which is about .3% of the current unemployment population. If they can secure a median wage job through our curriculum at $29,000/yr, then that would be an additional $43.5M/yr for the LA economy. We will ensure more members of our program will be able to reach or exceed this statistic. Professional development and financial literacy is not easily accessible in the current world, but Kaimore is proud to communicate essential information that will effectively develop our clients.
What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?
Since our founding, Kaimore has served over 800 low income individuals in 2020 alone through partnerships with City of Los Angeles, LAOC Apprenticeship Readiness Program, neighborhood councils, Family Source Centers, HACLA, and more. Between 2018-2020, 90.3% of our clients reported at least a 25% increase in savings, 87.4% of individuals improving their credit score by at least 35 points, 89.9% number of individuals with at least 25% reduction in debt, and 85% of individuals set and completed a 6-month long financial goal. Kaimore placed 63 out of 84 individuals enrolled in our pilot workforce development program into jobs despite the pandemic. The metrics we use to measure impact include: documenting number of unduplicated at-risk families enrolled, analysis of client changes in financial wellbeing as measured by the pre- and post- service survey, employment rate, and 3-6 months job retention rate.
Which of the create metrics will you impact?
- Income inequality
- Access to banks and financial institutions
- Unemployment rate
Indicate any additional LA2050 goals your project will impact.
- LA is the healthiest place to LIVE
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