September 6, 2023

Why I’m a part of Generation Work at Metro United Way

By: John Nevitt,
Director, Economic Mobility,
Metro United Way

As I continue to learn more about systemic barriers limiting individuals from reaching their fullest potential, I recognize how pivotal the work environment is for promoting economic mobility and long-term financial success. An inclusive, inviting workplace brings forth the best that employees have to offer. In contrast, employers who don’t focus on creating a positive work environment face decreased productivity, losing talented workers, and missing out on new, high-performing team members.

From my perspective, this is especially true for people of color who are so often underrepresented in sustainable, living wage career paths due to historical practices that have significantly limited wealth-building opportunities. When any of us don’t feel a sense of belonging due to a lack of cultural humility or understanding, it takes a significant toll.

In an ever-increasingly competitive market for attracting and retaining talent, employers must devote sufficient time and attention to promoting diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging. As one of my colleagues at Metro United Way, Brandon McReynolds, has poignantly remarked, “It’s time for employers to become not just consumers of talent, but producers of talent.” Setting employees up for success by creating a culture of acceptance is a critical step!

Generation Work is a collaborative initiative led by KentuckianaWorks that connects young adults of color with local employers to promote learning and ultimately to advance welcoming workplace environments. To learn more or to join our efforts, please visit this link.

We deeply appreciate the active engagement of our many collaborative partners including CSYALouisville, Goodwill Industries of Kentucky, YouthBuild Louisville, Belle of Louisville, Seven Counties Services, Norton Healthcare, Republic Bank and Trust Company, and UPS.


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