Category:Opportunity to Thrive

Lisa – #FiveYearsLater #STL2039

Community stories marking the five-year milestone after the killing of Michael Brown Jr. and the Ferguson uprising. Community members reflect on where we’ve been, where we are, and where we’re going.

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Vetta and Riisa – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Youth at the CenterOpportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHealthIncreasing Access to Care
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Amelia and Maria – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags YouthYouth at the CenterOpportunity to ThriveRacial EquityFinancial EmpowermentSupporting Career ReadinessRacial Equity Fund
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Erica and Serena – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHealthIncreasing Access to CareSTL2039
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David and Rachel – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Youth at the CenterOpportunity to ThriveRacial EquityStrengthening Anti-Bias and Cultural CompetencySTL2039
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Stacey and Bob – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityIncreasing Access to CareSTL2039
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Tishaura and Ellen – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Youth at the CenterOpportunity to ThriveRacial EquityFinancial EmpowermentBuilding a Racial Equity Infrastructure
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Val and Greg – #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityEducationSTL2039
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Jackie and Elisabeth — #STL2039

This is part of the #STL2039 Action Plan storytelling series in partnership with Humans of St. Louis. Jackie Hutchinson:  I am the Board President of Consumers Council of Missouri. CCM’s mission is to educate and advocate for the collective interests of consumers through leadership and partnerships on issues such as utility rates, personal finance, health…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHousingBuilding Equity through Enhanced Access to BankingSTL2039
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Stephanie and Neal — #STL2039

Sharing the visions of St. Louis residents for a future St. Louis—in 2039—where Racial Equity is the reality and what they’re doing to achieve it today. #STL2039

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHousingSTL2039
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Kayla

The Finesse Center started because I didn’t really know what else to do. After my brother passed, one of my friends from Webster University was like, “Hey, I have someone that wants to donate money. Where should they donate?” I was like, “I don’t know. To the family?” And they said, “You know what? We’re…

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Karishma

I, quite honestly, was kind of terrified. I knew my comfort zone was solidly in the area of numbers, and analytics, and modeling in statistics and data sets. Secondary data means you’re not actually in front of people, gathering information from their mouths, from their lived experiences, and then listening to it being relayed to…

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Faybra

I show up every day and I fight my hardest to contribute. There aren’t any Montessori schools in St. Louis I know of that have a director or an administrator who does community engaging, outreach coordinating, social justice, and Racial Equity. Before I took this position, I was a Montessori teacher for a school in…

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Claire

Given the work that U.S. Bank Community Development Corporation does, our investments we make in communities every day, and a lot of them in communities of color, there was a realization that we have a unique responsibility to be more actively engaged in equity work. It’s not to be a White institution that comes in…

Tags Racial Equity
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Julia

I’m a community organizer here in St. Louis. I previously worked with Missourians Organizing for Reform and Empowerment (MORE) and I’m the founder of Solidarity Economy St. Louis. When I first started getting involved in community organizing, I was part of a lot of direct action, which is of course what lead me to a…

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Paul

I attend a lot of national conferences to speak about the work of community development credit unions and Prosperity Connection. Whether I’m in St. Louis, or talking to people from other parts of the country, I always start by saying, “My name is Paul Woodruff. I’m from St. Louis, and St. Louis is a great…

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Justin

I’m from the West End, or as I like to say, “The forgotten West Side.” I found out about Forward Through Ferguson through I’m going to call it the male initiative to bring in African American males. I think it was either through an email or a tweet I received. I looked at it, clicked…

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Zack

My parents were involved in the civil rights movement in the 1960s. I grew up believing I understood and was on the right side of things. But Crossroads Anti-Bias Anti-Racism workshop opened my eyes differently and in such a way that I couldn’t close them anymore. It just changed my way of viewing the rest…

Tags Racial EquityBuilding a Racial Equity Infrastructure
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Scott

I was born and raised in Ferguson. My grandfather came here in 1920. I still get emotional because it’s my hometown. I couldn’t believe what was going on on many different levels. We worked so hard to make this a good town. I say “we” — the entire community. And to see what was going…

Tags YouthOpportunity to ThriveFinancial Empowerment
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What does it take to find a home?

It’s the summer of 2002. Fredica M., a St. Louis native who’s moved back to the Midwest after spending some time in California, is a 25-year old mother renting an apartment in South City. She’s glad to be back in her hometown, and expecting her third child. What she isn’t expecting is becoming homeless. When…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveFinancial EmpowermentHousing
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Starsky

There are a lot of more usual suspects who could have co-chaired the Commission. It probably made a whole lot better sense to appoint somebody else. But God gave me an opportunity to translate what was going on in the street at the time into the Commission’s work and attempt to do so effectively to…

Tags Racial Equity
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Ginger

Entrepreneurs are generally inherently disruptive because they’re trying to fix a problem and they’re trying to change whatever the status quo is around that problem. That’s what entrepreneurs do best. The kinds of challenges that face our community as a region, race-wise, require disrupting the norms.

Tags Opportunity to ThriveEducationFinancial Empowerment
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Michael

I care because I think that every St. Louisian makes St. Louis a great place to live and I don’t want to see my neighbors suffering. I don’t want to see my neighbors disenfranchised. I don’t want to see anybody hurt systemically in this city, in this region. It’s bad for everyone.

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHousingInfrastructure
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Why do you live where you live?

Deciding where to make your home is challenging enough when you’re familiar with where you’re moving. For those who transplant to St. Louis from an entirely different city, state, or country even, the advice of contacts in your soon-to-be-local area can provide valuable insights

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRacial EquityHousingInfrastructure
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Travis

It is a great place for social innovation and social entrepreneurship, but at the same time, two things that really hold St. Louis back are our fear of failure and our inability to handle negative things. Ferguson really showed us this.

Tags Racial EquityFinancial EmpowermentInfrastructure
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Summary of Terms

Apprenticeship A combination of on-the-job training and related instruction in which workers learn the practical and theoretical aspects of a highly skilled occupation. Source:U.S. Department of Labor, https://www.dol.gov/dol/topic/training/apprenticeship.htm Asset-Building Strategies that focus on the long-term development of individuals, families, and communities and that promote the increase of financial and tangible assets, such as savings,…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveSummary of Terms
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Ensuring Robust Minority Participation in the Job Market

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:Federal Reserve economists conducted an analysis of factors impacting per capita income growth and the growth of metropolitan areas at large for nearly 120 metropolitan areas throughout the U.S. as part of a report for the Fund for Our Economic…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveEnsuring Robust Minority Participation in the Job Market
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Prioritizing Youth-Focused Job Creation and Training

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:On a national scale, employment rates showed a ‘Great Age Twist’ between 2000 and 2011. Individuals under age 54 were less likely to be working in 2011 than in 2000, while those 55 and over were more likely to be…

Tags Opportunity to ThrivePrioritizing Youth-Focused Job Creation and Training
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Bolstering Employer-Educator Collaboration

The expert research, scholarship, and testimony of lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:According to economist and workforce development expert Harry Holzer, community colleges provide the majority of job training in the U.S. (Holzer, 2013). Studies have found that successful job training programs involve educators collaborating with employers to design curricula (Eyster,…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveBolstering Employer-Educator Collaboration
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Enhancing Access to Transportation

The expert testimony, scholarship, and accounts of lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:As stated by the Transportation Equity Caucus, “Transportation is a critical link to opportunity, connecting people to jobs, schools, affordable housing, health care, grocery stores, and more. For many Americans, mobility can make all the difference in their ability…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveTransportationEnhancing Access to Transportation
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Optimizing Existing Housing Support

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:The nation is facing a housing crisis (Desmond, 2015). The number of market-rate housing units affordable for lower-income families has decreased substantially (Poethig et al., 2015). In 2013, St. Louis City had 21 market-rate units available per 100 extremely-low income…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveHousingOptimizing Existing Housing Support
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Realigning Incentives and Funding to Improve Job Training and Creation

Realigning Incentives and Funding to Improve Job Training and Creation The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:Federal Reserve economists conducted an analysis of factors impacting per capita income growth and the growth of metropolitan areas at large for nearly 120 metropolitan areas throughout the U.S. as…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveRealigning Incentives and Funding to Improve Job Training and Creation
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Building Equity through Enhanced Access to Banking

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:As stated by researcher Martha Beard of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis:“The word unbanked is an umbrella term used to describe diverse groups of individuals who do not use banks or credit unions for their financial transactions….

Tags Opportunity to ThriveFinancial EmpowermentBuilding Equity through Enhanced Access to Banking
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Ensuring Communities’ Ability to Advocate for Equity

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:In July 2015, Governor Jay Nixon vetoed HB 722, a bill that would have, among other things, prevented cities from raising employment benefits above state and federal standards (Missouri House of Representatives, 2015). Governor Nixon noted:“House Bill No. 722…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveEnsuring Communities’ Ability to Advocate for Equity
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Ending Poverty

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:Federal Reserve economists conducted an analysis of factors impacting per capita income growth and the growth of metropolitan areas at large for nearly 120 metropolitan areas throughout the U.S. as part of a report for the Fund for Our Economic…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveEnding Poverty
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Promoting Asset Building

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:Research shows that increasing income for low-income families does not always increase generational wealth or reduce poverty (Shapiro et al., 2013). Income is often used as a measure of poverty; however, it does not provide as adequate a measure of…

Tags Opportunity to ThrivePromoting Asset Building
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Increasing Access to Care

The expert testimony, research, scholarship, and lived experience collected by the Commission revealed the following:Adults with insurance are more likely to have a usual source of care and access to preventive care (Ayanian et. al., 2000). Insured adults are therefore more likely to be up-to-date with their immunizations, more likely to receive cost-effective care,…

Tags Opportunity to ThriveHealthIncreasing Access to Care
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