91.7 Ann Arbor/Detroit 104.1 Grand Rapids 91.3 Port Huron 89.7 Lansing 91.1 Flint
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Grand Rapids program pairs people across socioeconomic class to address poverty

a group of people involved in Circles Grand Rapids
Courtesy of Circles Grand Rapids
The Circles Grand Rapids group wants to address poverty by building social capital for low-income participants.

The Next Idea

Building community to end poverty.

That's the mission of Circles USA. It's a long-term effort that's all about empowering people of low-income to move out of poverty.

Low-income participants are the program's leaders. They pair up with an middle-to-high-income ally. The idea is to gain resources and fight poverty by building circles of influence.

Alison Boston and Susan Rowe are from Circles Grand Rapids. Boston is a leader in the program and Rowe is an ally.

Listen above to hear the two women explain what social capital is, and why it's a useful tool for addressing poverty.

In Michigan, Circles groups exist in Grand Rapids, Fremont, Holland, and Washtenaw County.

The Next Ideais Michigan Radio’s project devoted to new innovations and ideas that will change our state.

Join the conversation on Twitter or Facebook, or let us know your Next Idea here.

(Subscribe to The Next Idea podcast on iTunes, or with this RSS link.)


Stateside is produced daily by a dedicated group of producers and production assistants. Listen daily, on-air, at 3 and 8 p.m., or subscribe to the daily podcast wherever you like to listen.