Economic hardship and income inequality are growing in Vermont and nationally, deepening the divide that leaves many people struggling to get ahead no matter how hard they work. Building economic equity and closing that gap means creating opportunities for individuals to build financial security and generational wealth. With a focus on elevating groups who have historically been excluded from wealth-building opportunities, including BIPOC Vermonters, women, low-income Vermonters, and individuals and families experiencing generational poverty, our team will focus grantmaking on:
Owning a home is widely recognized as a major driver of financial security. By investing in affordable housing, downtown and village living with access to public transportation and infrastructure in rural villages and historic districts, we create new options for home ownership.
Place-based economic development
Our places–our historic centers, farms, forests, and natural spaces–underpin the Vermont economy, and are powerful assets upon which we can build our economy. The unique characteristics of a community can help attract entrepreneurs and workers. When we invest in the assets of a community–be it a tech hub or a trail system–we strengthen opportunities for people and businesses to thrive.
Business ownership and entrepreneurship
Rural small businesses and entrepreneurship play key roles in local wealth building, leadership development, and economic resilience. Grantmaking in this area will support employee ownership, businesses owned by women and other historically marginalized groups, and growing the entrepreneurial ecosystem in Vermont.