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Government Partnerships & Policy

Partnerships that build an inclusive economy

The public and private sector must work together to build an inclusive and equitable economy. Through effective policy-making, partnerships, and government investment in employment social enterprises, we can ensure that more people have the opportunity to work and thrive.

REDF plays a key role in making this collaboration a reality – developing impactful public-private partnerships and influencing policy at the federal and state levels to promote public investment in employment social enterprises.

Through our Government Partnerships and Policy work, we aim to grow and strengthen the national field of employment social enterprises – and increase economic mobility for their employees.

Government Partnerships

REDF works as an intermediary for communities that seek to build partnerships with ESEs and provides capacity building consulting to ESEs on accessing public funding sources.

We co-created and manage the nation’s first public-private partnership that connects the workforce system with ESEs – LA:RISE – and serve as program lead for CA RISE, the nation’s first statewide investment in employment social enterprise. See below for all active government partnerships.


To create systemic change, REDF informs and influences policymakers on the federal, state, and local levels to invest in ESEs – and mobilizes ESE leaders as advocates on policy issues.

Most recently, REDF sponsored a successful budget request in California, to create the California Regional Initiative for Social Enterprises (CA RISE), a first-of-its-kind capital and technical assistance program exclusively for ESEs. Additionally, we lead two policy coalitions, RESET and California RESET, to advocate for capital, resources, and policy change.

Read our 2023 federal and California policy recommendations.

Active Government Partnerships


Launched in 2023, CA RISE (California Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise) marks the nation’s first statewide capital and capacity-building investment in employment social enterprises. In partnership with the California Office of the Small Business Advocate (CalOSBA), REDF serves as program lead for this $25 million investment and will deliver customized technical assistance to grantees.

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The Los Angeles Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise (LA:RISE) is the nation’s first public-private partnership connecting the workforce system with ESEs. By uniting the City and County of Los Angeles, this program helps Angelenos building a better life after experiences of homelessness get jobs and stay employed.

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SNAP Employment & Training

REDF, in partnership with Seattle Jobs Initiative and Center for Employment Opportunities, has launched a program providing technical assistance for ESEs seeking to become SNAP Employment & Training third-party partners. These partnerships unlock a diverse and sustainable public funding source for ESEs, allowing them to serve more people.

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Santa Clara County Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise (SCC:RISE)

More than 30,000 people return home from incarceration each year in Santa Clara County. REDF has partnered with County’s Office of Reentry Services to launch SCC:RISE, which will expand employment opportunities for these returning citizens by working with them to develop and operate their own small business or social enterprise.

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Current Policy Advocacy

Read our 2023 National Policy Recommendations and 2023 California Policy Recommendations, and see our recent policy successes.

We are actively advocating for legislation that would

strengthen SNAP Employment & Training in the 2023 Farm Bill Reauthorization:

Federal Legislation

ESE Advocacy

On top of our legislative and budget wins, REDF and our partners continue to meet with Congressional offices and federal agencies and testify before Congress, demonstrating the role ESEs can play in stimulating the national economy, combating multi-generational poverty, and addressing economic, gender, and racial disparities.

All of this work is supported by our national coalition — Resourcing Social Enterprises Together (RESET). In just over a year, it has grown to almost 60+ organizations nationwide and advocates for ESE inclusion in economic recovery packages to serve even more people who are especially vulnerable to the economic and health crises, and the racial inequities that so starkly persist.

These wins and organizing – at a critical time for shaping our economic recovery – will have ripple effects for years to come. Language is powerful, and we will continue to encourage our government leaders to ‘come back’ and ‘build back better’ in partnership with ESEs.

Some recent ESE advocacy highlights include:

ESEs and worker co-ops are innovative, evidence-based approaches that train employees while they’re earning a paycheck, radically transforming the lives of people who are all too often seen as unemployable. Offering skills training and employment together is one of the best ways to enable successful returns to the workforce and strengthen our economy long-term.

CA State Senator Josh BeckerD-Peninsula

Los Angeles is a city of second chances, where anyone can succeed…We are making these strides by bringing everyone together – local government, nonprofits, our business community – all working towards a shared goal: to make sure everyone shares in the wealth of opportunities this city creates. That’s why I launched the Los Angeles Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise (LA:RISE) along with our partners at REDF.

Former Mayor, Eric GarcettiCity of Los Angeles, CA

I can’t overstate the importance and urgency of ending homelessness in Los Angeles County. Homelessness will not be solved overnight. However, through innovative and collaborative partnerships, we can together support our most vulnerable residents and provide hope for a better future. That is why I’m proud to continue my support for LA:RISE.

Supervisor Hilda SolisLA County Board of Supervisors, First District

I was excited to visit CRCD and see the incredible work they are doing in our district to make sure that people returning from jail or prison, and those experiencing homelessness, get the support they need to stay free, productive and off the streets. By combining jobs, training, and services, they are helping to ensure that all Angelenos have access to economic opportunity, housing, and safe communities. All of which reduces crime rates and recidivism. Thank you for the work you do.

Mayor, Karen BassCity of Los Angeles