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Livelihoods refers to quality job opportunities that, whether through formal employment or entrepreneurship, provide dignified income, marketable skills, and sustained security that can empower the poor to lift themselves out of poverty. Insecure livelihoods can take multiple forms (unemployment, informal status, or working poor) and affects every industry in poor and rich countries alike.

Desired Equilibrium

Global markets provide equitable access to jobs that ensure a livable wage, safe working conditions, skill-building opportunities and a secure, sustainable income for all individuals. Small and medium enterprises are thrive in developing regions, feeding the development of regional human capital through high quality job opportunities and training. Thriving local markets also provide entrepreneurs with the support and opportunity to build livelihoods through healthy lending markets, supportive regulatory environments and robust social safety nets.

Ways Skoll social entrepreneurs are addressing the issue:
  • Providing skills training, education, and tools to increase employability and income-generating capacity (Building Markets, Digital Divide Data, Gawad Kalinga, International Development Enterprises-India, Kickstart, Nidan, One Acre Fund, Proximity Designs, Root Capital, Saude Crianca, Telapak)
  • Directly creating employment and entrepreneurship opportunities in areas of high need (Arzu, Barefoot College, Building Markets, Ciudad Saludable, Digital Divide Data, Friends-International, Fundacion Paraguaya, Living Goods, Gawad Kalinga, Saude Crianca)
  • Targeting corporate supply chains to ensure fair working conditions and higher wages (Fair Trade USA, Global Witness, GoodWeave, Verite)