by Bill Gaventa, PFTW Project Consultant, and Erik Carter, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center UCEDD
How do most of us get our jobs, at least somewhere along our work lives? It is often through personal relationships and networking that we find out about openings. Or, in other words, social capital is often the pathway to work.
Congregations are among the most numerous and natural support organizations in the United States. In fact, there are over 300,000 local faith communities across a diversity of traditions. Who attends these faith communities? Your immediate answer might be a collection of people who share a common set of beliefs and commitments and have chosen a particular congregation as their spiritual home. But there is another way to look at this membership. Faith communities are also filled with employers and employees from throughout the surrounding community. It is comprised of people who have deep knowledge of and personal relationships throughout the community. Moreover, faith communities represent the largest source of donors and volunteers in the country. [continue reading…]