Families are the cornerstones of communities. Within healthy families, children learn how to be productive members of our society, helping to ensure a positive future for our state. We know that kids do well when their families do well, and families do better when they live in supportive neighborhoods and communities.

But many Maine parents don’t have the kind of jobs that help them provide for themselves, their children or their aging parents, because they lack the training or education needed to secure such jobs or the resources needed to keep them.

The John T. Gorman Foundation believes that helping parents provide and care for their families is crucial to our state’s success.

Where we are and where we need to be

All parents believe that their sacrifices will achieve a better life for their families. But even with hard work, far too many parents still encounter serious obstacles that keep them from attaining meaningful work and saving for the future.


Over the past five years, Maine has seen a persistently high percentage of children living in low-income, working families. Among the six New England states, Maine has the largest percentage of children in low-income, working families – 45 percent.

Through our work with partners, we hope to see more low-income parents in Maine:

  • Attain post-secondary degrees or credentials
  • Secure and keep jobs that provide increased income and growth potential
  • Build savings and assets that help them weather a financial setback

How we do our work

The Foundation partners with communities, advocates and leaders in the nonprofit, public and private sectors to:

  • Increase access to job training and education
  • Improve the delivery of supports that can help parents and their families succeed, like high quality child care
  • Expand access to programs that help parents increase savings, plan for their future and better care for their families

We also work to promote strategies that bundle together a number of supports that families need so that parents are in a better position to raise strong, healthy and thriving children and overcome personal or financial setbacks.

Read more about The John T. Gorman's focus on families here.

Families Resources

Two Generations, One Future:  moving parents and children beyond poverty together

Two Generations, One Future: moving parents and children beyond poverty together

Ascend at the Aspen Institute was launched with catalytic support from a core circle of investors with the mission to serve as a hub for breakthrough ideas and proven strategies that move parents, especially women, and their children beyond poverty toward educational success and economic security. This paper outlines the emerging case for and shares a framework for two-generation approaches. View Resource
Child Poverty and Adult Success

Child Poverty and Adult Success

One in every five children currently lives in poverty, but nearly twice as many experience poverty sometime during childhood. Using 40 years of data, this analysis follows children from birth to age 17, then through their 20s, to examine how childhood poverty and family and neighborhood characteristics relate to achievement in young adulthood, such as completing high school by age 20, enrolling in postsecondary education by age 25, completing a four-year college degree by age 25, and being consistently employed from ages 25 to 30. Parents’ education achievement, residential stability, and neighborhood quality all relate to adult success. View Resource
The Alternative Staffing Work Experience: Populations, Barriers and Employment Outcomes

The Alternative Staffing Work Experience: Populations, Barriers and Employment Outcomes

This paper presents results of a three-year study of workers and former workers at four Alternative Staffing Organizations (ASOs). ASOs are fee-for-service job brokering businesses created by community-based organizations and national nonprofits whose objective is to gain access to temporary and “temp to permanent” opportunities for workers facing barriers to employment. This paper demonstrates how the complex relationships between individual worker characteristics and experience with an ASO affect future job prospects. View Resource
Making Tomorrow Better Together

Making Tomorrow Better Together

This report from the Two-Generation Outcomes Working Group is designed to set a foundation for how practitioners and policymakers consider the intended outcomes of two-generation programs and the pathways to achieve those outcomes.
View Resource
CA$H Maine

CA$H Maine

CA$H Maine is a statewide collaboration of ten coalitions, comprised of 50 non- and for-profit partners, working together to help empower Maine individuals and families to achieve long-term financial stability. View Resource

View all Families Resources


Recent Grants 

Portland Adult Education, Portland $172,985 to make programmatic and instructional improvements to their adult English speakers of other languages (ESOL) programs that reflect best practices and will increase proficiency for adult English language learners.

National Green and Healthy Homes Initiative  $256,000 to provide a full time staff position and technical assistance to the Lewiston/Auburn Green Healthy Homes Initiative, which is a broad-based coalition charged with reducing rates of asthma, lead poisoning and other health hazards that stem from unsafe housing.

New Ventures, Augusta $750,000 to expand the work of CA$H Coalitions statewide as they help families become more financially stable through developing and building assets.

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