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Economic Advancement

Through economic advancement programs, United Way of Central Maryland helps people gain the skills they need to achieve stable employment. We work with those who are eligible for government benefits to reduce their need for assistance and remove the obstacles keeping them from a job that pays the bills.  

Through instruction, trainings, career mentoring, and apprenticeships, we put people on track to gain the self-sufficiency we all desire and deserve—and that will allow them to attain a stable, healthy life for themselves and their families. 



WorkWays is United Way of Central Maryland’s comprehensive employee/employer engagement program designed to transform and redefine relationships between employers and talent and create more equitable working environments.

Focused on increasing retention rates, fostering professional development, and driving positive business results, WorkWays partners with employers to support employees by utilizing resource navigation, supportive community services, and career coaching, all grounded in research and best practice models.

WorkWays Benefits:

  • Stronger retention rates that convey business stability for creditors and employees
  • Equitable environments that create advancement opportunities for employees
  • Support in the workplace and from community resources that builds stronger employees and helps foster their economic stability
  • Strategic and effective use of resources that support business goals
  • Strong employees and businesses that help strengthen our communities and the local economy



United Way of Central Maryland launched its inaugural Workforce Leadership Academy in partnership with The Aspen Institute and with support from The Weinberg Foundation. 

The Workforce Leadership Academy brings leaders from across Baltimore’s workforce ecosystem together for a year-long series of retreats, workshops, and action learning projects. Academies engage senior-level managers of organizations that make up our workforce development ecosystem.  

Learn more about the Workforce Leadership Academy and meet the first cohort of fellows.  



In partnership with the Federal Reserve of Atlanta, United Way of Central Maryland developed the Career Ladder Identifier and Financial Forecaster (CLIFF) Dashboard to help Marylanders make informed career decisions to overcome the benefits cliff. Career-long projections on earnings are based on income, public benefits, and career choice. Learn more.



United Way of Central Maryland offers free programming to support financial literacy. Programming includes: 

  • Creating a personal budget  

  • Understanding your paycheck 

  • Setting aside money for an emergency fund  

  • Planning to pay off debts 

  • Saving for a big expense, like a car, a home, or school 

  • Finding out what your credit score is and how to improve it  

  • Planning for retirement 

You’ll also work one-on-one with a financial coach to help improve your financial situation.