Current Investments

Since 2019, The Studio @ Blue Meridian has invested in organizations who seek to overcome barriers to scale and are poised to support an equitable recovery.

Benefits Data Trust

Benefits Data Trust (BDT) harnesses the power of data, technology, and policy to connect eligible individuals and families to public benefits—including SNAP, WIC, and Medicaid/CHIP—and transforms how they are delivered in the US. In its effort to help people gain financial stability and improve their health, BDT provides comprehensive application assistance to eligible individuals; collaborates with diverse, cross-sector partners to simplify the benefits access landscape; works with research partners to identify improved outcomes associated with benefit programs; and influences policy to ensure that benefits access is human-centered, comprehensive, equitable, and cost-effective.

Learn more about Benefits Data Trust

Beyond 12

Beyond 12 envisions a world in which the college completion gap is closed and students’ race, ZIP code, and their parents’ level of education no longer predict their college graduation outcomes or their future success. It seeks to enable this future by increasing the number of students from historically underrepresented backgrounds who graduate from college and who translate their degrees into meaningful employment and choice-filled lives. Working in partnership with colleges, college success organizations, and high schools, Beyond 12 supports students through a digital coaching platform that helps students complete their post-secondary journeys, including a campus-customized mobile app, virtual coaching, and a predictive and prescriptive analytics engine.

Learn more about Beyond 12

CodePath

CodePath transforms computer science education for underrepresented minorities and students from low-income backgrounds to eliminate inequity in the tech workforce. It offers free, supplemental courses in cybersecurity, mobile app development, web development, and technical interview preparation across 60 university partners and in a virtual format. Students also receive access to career services such as one-on-one mentoring sessions with industry professionals, technical interviewing support, and access to both pre-internship and technical internship programs. To date, CodePath has served over 10,000 students, of which 55% represent underserved communities, and partners with large employers like Facebook, Cognizant, Microsoft, and Walmart to systematically increase diversity in tech.

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Compass Working Capital

Compass Working Capital supports families with low incomes to build assets and financial capabilities as a pathway to economic opportunity, and out of poverty. Compass’ core program model supports families living in federally subsidized housing by partnering with affordable housing providers to expand the scope and impact of an existing federal housing initiative – the Family Self-Sufficiency (FSS) program. Since 2010, Compass has worked with these partners to integrate the FSS program’s highly-scalable asset-building opportunity with financial coaching and other asset-building strategies. Its model has significantly increased enrollment rates and had a measurable impact on the financial security and economic mobility of participating households. Compass aims to scale its model and, ultimately, make asset-building the norm rather than the exception in our nation’s anti-poverty work.

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Compass Working Capital

Grameen America

Grameen America envisions an inclusive society in which all entrepreneurs, regardless of gender, race, or income, have access to fair and affordable financial services to support upward economic mobility. Grameen America provides affordable capital, credit- and asset-building supports, and financial education to help entrepreneurial women who live in poverty build businesses to enable financial mobility, create jobs in their communities, and enter the mainstream financial system. Through Grameen America’s high-touch group model, members form peer networks and foster relationships with one another, which builds social capital and broadens entrepreneurs’ support systems; reshapes behaviors and financial discipline; and promotes long-term retention in the program. Since 2008, Grameen America has invested over $1.8 billion in 135,000 women entrepreneurs across 15 US cities.

Learn more about Grameen America

LEAD

Inaugurated in Seattle in 2011 as the nation’s first pre-arrest, pre-booking diversion model and now replicated across the nation and internationally, LEAD uses a multi-agency systems approach to reduce criminal justice involvement for people whose unlawful conduct stems from mental illness or substance use disorder. A partnership of social service organizations, justice-systems and elected leaders, and diverse community stakeholders, LEAD authorizes law enforcement officers to divert such people entirely out of the criminal justice system and into long-term, non-coercive, community-based case management at the earliest possible opportunity: the moment of potential arrest. By intervening at the front door of the criminal justice system and deploying evidence-based practices proven most effective for people with these complex challenges, LEAD provides a transformative new solution not only for the people it serves but for law enforcement agencies, health systems, nonprofit service providers, and communities. The LEAD National Support Bureau, a program of the Public Defender Association, is the nation’s exclusive resource for strategic guidance and technical support for jurisdictions implementing LEAD.

Learn more about LEAD
LEAD National Support Bureau

Management Leadership for Tomorrow

Management Leadership for Tomorrow (MLT) is a national nonprofit that is on the front lines of the push for racial equity, focused on driving breakthrough results for college students and professionals of color. MLT prepares low- and moderate-income men and women of color to secure high trajectory post-college jobs that deliver economic mobility for their families and then provides the social capital they need to become high-impact senior leaders who can transform our institutions and vulnerable communities. MLT provides one-on-one professional coaching, a personalized playbook that outlines the high-performance bar, and access to an accelerating network of 130+ top employers, peers, and 8,000+ MLT alumni to help students successfully bridge their critical college-to-career transition.

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Merit America

Merit America provides a path to upwardly-mobile careers for low-wage workers who want to make a career transition but lack the time or money for college or full-time training programs. The program can be completed part-time and on the learner’s schedule, a key differentiator for busy working adults. Merit America partners with major employers, using labor market data to identify high-demand roles and skills required to succeed. Merit America then teaches these skills through 14- to 24-week programs with flexible asynchronous and live online instruction, coaching, and peer support.

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OneGoal

OneGoal is a national postsecondary success organization that works to close the college degree divide and create a more equitable future.  They partner with public schools in low-income communities across the country to ensure postsecondary planning, preparation, and support are no longer extracurricular luxuries, but rather integral components of the high school experience. Their three-year program starts as a daily class in students’ junior and senior years of high school and continues with remote support through students’ first year of college or other postsecondary path. In 2019, OneGoal launched a systemwide solution that integrates their model into the fabric of entire school districts, thus ensuring all students have the opportunity to achieve their greatest postsecondary aspirations.

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Per Scholas

Per Scholas is an organization that for over 25 years has worked to build greater diversity in the tech industry by providing adult job seekers who are significantly underrepresented in the technology field – Black or Latino/a individuals and those from low-income communities – with the critical skills and networks they need to launch well-paying careers in the tech field. Per Scholas designs in-demand accelerated and job-specific bootcamp-style adult learning experiences aligned with employer needs. It then provides in-person and remote 10-15-week intensive, hands-on technical training, professional development, financial security coaching, and other learner support services for those who need them. Post course completion, Per Scholas alumni can access ongoing job placement, advanced training, financial coaching, and career development opportunities.

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UpTogether

UpTogether trusts and invests directly in low-income people so they can work individually and collectively to achieve prosperity. They provide a technology platform where people experiencing poverty can build and exchange social capital and access unrestricted cash transfers to help them accomplish goals they have chosen on their own self-determined paths. UpTogether uses the data and achievements of people who join to drive government and philanthropy adoption of its strength-based approach to reach the 50 million people living with low-incomes in the US.

Learn more about UpTogether

Vision to Learn

Vision To Learn (VTL) provides children in underserved communities with the glasses they need to succeed in school and in life. Left untreated, vision problems are associated with adverse life outcomes, including delays in literacy acquisition, high rates of special education referrals, and a greater-than-average likelihood of contact with the criminal justice system. Using mobile vision clinics, VTL partners with school districts and community organizations in low-income and rural communities across the US to bring free vision care to K-12 students. Services provided include vision screenings, eye exams and glasses, as well as replacement of broken or lost glasses.

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Waterford UPSTART

Waterford UPSTART helps young children develop cognitive and social-emotional skills in the home by empowering parents to become their child’s first and most influential teachers. Waterford UPSTART’s instructional program is used 15 minutes per day, five days a week, guiding children along a personalized path to learn the fundamentals of literacy. Parents are also partnered with parent coaches who provide tools and insight to help parents continue to work with their children offline. Independent research shows the average graduate enters kindergarten reading at nearly a first-grade level. Waterford UPSTART is available to all families, including those unserved or underserved by existing Pre-K options, at no cost.

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Waterford-UPSTART

Zearn

Zearn is the nonprofit educational organization behind Zearn Math, the top-rated math learning platform used by 1 in 4 elementary students nationwide. Zearn Math supports teachers with research-backed curriculum and digital lessons proven to double the learning gains of a typical year of instruction. Zearn Math instructional materials – including 400+ hours of digital math learning – are free for teachers and families. Zearn also offers school- and district-wide licenses and professional development to support implementation. Everything Zearn does is driven by the belief that every kid can be a math kid.

Learn more about Zearn