“Give someone a fish and you feed them for a day.  Teach them to fish and you feed them for a lifetime.”  – Maimonides

Empowerment Works is volunteer run 501(c)(3) not for profit charitable organization formed in 2012 whose mission is to empower the lives of residents of the Fort Myers Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Corridor through economic change.  We believe economic empowerment is best achieved through the creation of careers.  We believe that those in need can be most effectively helped by assisting them to become self sufficient.  Achieving a career is an individual’s best path toward self sufficiency.

In a 2014 Forbes article, Steve Denning writes about studies performed by the Kauffman Foundation and the Institute for Competitiveness & Prosperity that found that over a 25 year period, almost all of the private sector net new jobs were created by businesses that were less than five years old.  Companies that were more than five years old, large or small, generally destroyed more jobs than they created in all but 8 of the 25 years.

Since most net job growth is derived from new companies, Empowerment Works approach to job and career creation has evolved into a two prong approach; promoting, mentoring and teaching entrepreneurship to individuals who own or are considering their own businesses, and assisting individuals to gain new skills for new careers.

Empowerment Works, Inc’s offices are located at the Southwest Florida Enterprise Center in Fort Myers.  The Southwest Florida Enterprise Center was formed by the City of Fort Myers as a business incubator dedicated to assisting start up or early stage businesses succeed.  The Enterprise Center offers classes and programs teaching entrepreneurship and small business ownership skills.  Empowerment Works has partnered with the Enterprise Center to be a resource for small businesses and individual clients at the Enterprise Center.

Empowerment Works’ three programs include our Entrepreneurship Program, our Social Enterprise (see our blog post) Apprenticeship Program, and our Scholarship Program.  Please visit our Our Programs page to learn more about each.

The IRS has recognized Empowerment Works, Inc. as a tax exempt 501(c)(3) charitable organization.  Donations to Empowerment Works, Inc. are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.  Please visit our Please Donate! page.