This report measures our success in key strategic areas related to achieving a major reduction in poverty. The data is collected from Chapters across North America America and is compiled by Circles USA.
THERE ARE FOUR VARIABLES THAT INFLUENCE THE RESULTS OF CIRCLES, INCLUDING:
1. The level of employability of Circle Leaders CUSA tracks whether people are in situational poverty or have been raised in poverty. We also note whether they are entering an educational or career track. The level of work experience usually determines the level of soft skills people possess prior to Circles that assists them in earning more income.
2. Availability of Jobs The availability of good-paying jobs in a community dictates how easy it is for people to find economically secure jobs. The trends of automation, globalization and artificial intelligence are rapidly changing the economy. People must have higher-level skills to be qualified for jobs that provide enough income to reach at least 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines and become economically stable. Circles provide long-term support so that people can achieve the education and training necessary to secure good jobs.
3. The impact of the Cliff Effect The most challenging Cliff Effects are in childcare and healthcare insurance. For many, there is a real hardship from shifting from stable benefits to unstable earned income. This is especially true if that income does not cover all the expenses the benefits covered. People raised with food stamps, housing assistance vouchers, and/or TANF subsidies often find it psychologically difficult to exchange secured benefits for new earned income opportunities. If they cannot predict changes, it becomes a potential crisis to accept more earned income. Therefore, Circles USA created its own online Cliff Effect Planning Tool.
4. Social Capital Circles boosts the social capital of each participant to have more peer relationships as well as “Allies” who provide new networks of connections. Circles is co-designed with a variety of education, employment, and human services programs to provide volunteer-driven community supports that produce better results.
DATA REGARDING SPECIFIC CHAPTERS OR COMMUNITIES IS AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST.