HOW WE WORK
Golden State Opportunity (GSO) is led by doers who educate, engage, and empower working families. Our groundbreaking, culturally relevant work in thirteen languages reaches millions of low-income Californians and connects them with the financial resources they need to survive and then thrive.
GSO leads comprehensive statewide campaigns to help families access public benefits, receive tailored financial coaching, achieve financial stability and plan for the future through programs that uplift low-income Californians. What works in Oakland doesn’t always work in Salinas. That’s why GSO has partnerships with 40+ community-based organizations across the state led by trusted community messengers.
Grassroots advocacy is in our DNA. Our community of working families is leading the charge for public policies that meaningfully reduce–rather than exacerbate–poverty in California. Government should make things easier for people when they’re struggling, but too often bureaucracy gets in the way. GSO won’t stop pushing for systemic change until everyone can easily access the resources they need to meet their basic needs and transform their lives with financial stability.
WHY IT MATTERS
Although California is the richest state in the country and the fifth largest economy in the world, more than one in six Californians live in poverty. Millions more live on the brink of poverty, and the COVID-19 pandemic is only making things worse. Living paycheck to paycheck is expensive due to unexpected costs, high fees, predatory landlords, and predatory lending. Increasingly, there are two Californias divided by haves and have-nots.
Everyone in our state should be able to afford life’s basic needs: food, housing, and health care. Generational wealth and opportunity should be accessible to all Californians, not only the wealthiest among us. We can make this goal a reality if we give people a hand to escape poverty traps and build financial well-being. With comprehensive financial education and policies that support low-income workers, such as the minimum wage, public benefit reform, and continued expansion of the federal EITC, we can end poverty as we know it.