Workforce Matters held its inaugural national convening for workforce funders in Washington, D.C. on November 14-16, 2022. It was fantastic to be in real life--together! We were thrilled with the turnout and grateful to all of the sponsors, speakers, workshop hosts, and moderators who made the event a success. We also had the opportunity to celebrate and thank departing Workforce Matters co-director Sarah Oldmixon for her many contributions to Workforce Matters. Missed the event but want to learn more? We have updated the event website to include resources for most of the sessions. And WorkingNation has written a nice summary of the event as well.
While it's nearly impossible to sum up all of the content shared over the three days, here are a few thoughts:
- Philanthropy has an opportunity over the next two years to leverage the funding and the moment created by the Infrastructure and Jobs Act to ensure that its benefits are equitably shared. Workforce funders can support the outreach, strategizing and community organizing that will ensure equitable implementation.
- Be curious and humble. Question assumptions. Look outside the walls of our institutions to share power and build power.
- Don't forget the lessons of the pandemic and how to reimagine what is possible. Philanthropy, with its flexibility, dollars, and social capital, needs to lean into the space of reimagining workforce development together WITH communities.
Stay tuned for more programming in 2023 that picks up themes from the conference. And if you were there, please take a moment to tell us what you thought!
Truly, we can go further, together.