With #GivingTuesday just around the corner on December 3, the holiday giving season is almost here. But when practically every nonprofit on the planet is asking for donations, how do you choose where to put your precious dollars?

To help make your decision a little easier, here are 9 reasons to give to EMPath this holiday season (or any time of year).


1. Our coaching model works. For real.

  • Our mentors know it:

“It works. It’s really just that simple. The tools we have resonate with participants and the data show that it actually does work.” - Mentor Carlos M.

“The participants drive us. Because they drive us, we will forever be successful in that we are disrupting poverty.” - Mentor Jessica A.

“I say it all the time – Mobility Mentoring works. It works differently and at different speeds for everybody, but it works.” - Mentor Bryna R.

  • The numbers show it:

Since the program’s start in 2009, participants in our flagship program have increased their annual incomes by an average of 178%

In Fiscal Year 2019, flagship program participants saw a 62% increase in college degrees and a $2,826 average increase in monthly income

In Fiscal Year 2019, 55% of all EMPath participants became employed

  • Most importantly, participants experience it:

“EMPath, I think, has been the greatest thing I’ve come across. I feel like they’re not just EMPath. They’re my family. They’ve changed my life.” - Ada, Whittier CHOICE participant

“EMPath has taught me to focus on the positive, the magic of believing in myself, the rewards of setting goals and working hard to accomplish them, and the value of starting with baby steps and progressing to leaps and bounds. Where I am right now in my life would truly not be possible without EMPath.” - Karin, MassLEAP graduate

“I feel like I can accomplish anything! Nothing in this world is outside of my reach. With good planning and a little determination, we can move mountains.” - Lashaunda, Career Family Opportunity participant

2. Your money will be well spent.

  • Many EMPath programs operate through government funding. That means your donation will go toward our long-term programs like Career Family Opportunity (our flagship program).
  • EMPath is on solid financial footing, with healthy streams of revenue.

3. Our work is local…

We operate one of Massachusetts’ largest emergency shelters, located in the Boston neighborhood of Brighton. Our other programs stretch across Mattapan, Roxbury, Dorchester, South Boston, and other Boston neighborhoods. Whether starting out in shelter or already in permanent housing, every participant receives 1:1 coaching with a mentor.

4. …AND global.

Through our global network, organizations across the country and the world are adopting our model. It’s being used in 35 U.S. states and in Australia, the UK, and the Netherlands. The model is being implemented state-wide in Washington State and city-wide in New York City.

5. We’re leading a human services revolution.

We don’t just share our model with network members – we learn from them too. The path to economic independence looks different for every family and for every city, state, and country. We can do this work better through shared learning and collaboration.

6. We’re disrupting poverty on a systemic level, too.

EMPath’s advocacy team plays an active role in the Massachusetts State House. In the past decade, EMPath and our partners have helped lift Massachusetts’ family cap, bring tens of millions of dollars in workforce training funding to the state budget, raise the income cap for families currently in shelter, and much more. Our priority bills are selected based on input from EMPath families and staff.

7. We’re a unique blend of old and new.

With roots in mid-1800s Boston, EMPath is steeped in history. Yet we’re also at the cutting edge of economic mobility work — our 1:1 coaching model takes a new approach by drawing on the latest brain science research.

8. We’re nationally recognized.

Earlier this year, EMPath won JFF’s $1 Billion Wage Gain Challenge, which sought ideas to raise the annual wages of at least 100,000 workers by $10,000 or more by the end of 2021 for a total impact of $1 billion.

We were part of the U.S. Partnership on Mobility from Poverty, an initiative from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Urban Institute. We’ve worked alongside the Harvard Center for the Developing Child, the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the World Bank, and more.

9. We emphasize participants’ agency and expertise.

Participants are the experts of their own lives and know what is best for themselves and their families. Mentors act as guides and supports, but the participants are the ones determining their own goals and doing the hard work of achieving them. The determination and perseverance of our participants is what fuels EMPath’s success.


Save the date! #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving following Black Friday and Cyber Monday, is coming up on December 3. Follow EMPath on Facebook and Twitter for the latest updates, and be sure to subscribe to our email list.