The Family Independence Initiative (FII) is a national organization of racially diverse individuals with a passion for social justice. Our mission is to accelerate social and economic mobility for individuals and families living with low incomes.
After working with thousands of families since our founding in 2001, at FII, we are certain people don’t live in poverty because they are lazy, uneducated or mismanage money as stereotypes would indicate. Instead, the poverty cycle, which disproportionately impacts Black and Latinx communities, can be traced to well-intentioned but inadequate governmental and charitable policies and practices that rely on a traditional top-down approach. Our approach views low-income individuals and families from a position of strength, recognizing that they have the capacity and insight needed to make decisions for themselves and don’t need outside saviors or solutions.
Our three-pronged strength-based approach includes:
To execute our approach, we built UpTogether, a technology platform that transfers cash investments directly into families’ bank accounts (or sends them a prepaid card if they prefer) and offers an interactive component for individuals to grow and strengthen their social networks, and support one another so they can move up together.
We have proven that fostering social networks, honoring self-determination, and matching people’s efforts with unrestricted cash investments results in achieving significant progress toward social and economic mobility. Our focus now is on bringing this approach to philanthropic and government organizations throughout the country by encouraging the adoption of direct investment and the distribution of funds through our UpTogether platform.
At FII, we work towards these values:
● Impact: We seek to bring our strength-based approach to the 50M+ people struggling with poverty and their communities in this country.
● Leadership: We value a culture where everyone is constantly learning and applying that learning to create solutions in partnership that can be tested and applied at scale.
● Partnership: We invest in building partnerships of proactive communication and mutual trust within and outside of the organization.
Equity: We create a community that embraces racial and gender equity, diversity, and inclusion, and we support the efforts of others to build such communities.
The Family Independence Initiative (FII) is a national organization of racially diverse individuals with a passion for social justice. Our mission is to accelerate social and economic mobility for individuals and families living with…