Poverty Matters

August 27th, 2019 by

26%:  Savannah’s poverty rate

Step Up Savannah promotes economic opportunity and financial security in Chatham County, GA.  While more than a quarter of Savannah’s residents live in poverty, that percentage jumps to 50% and higher in some neighborhoods. Such high rates have persisted for more than 30 years.

$22,314: The current poverty threshold for a family of four.

$22,314: The current poverty threshold for a family of four.

Established in 2005 by a group of community leaders who recognized that the city’s pockets of concentrated poverty impair the economic development of the entire community, Step Up incorporated as an independent nonprofit in 2008 and now has a 39-member board of directors.

The organization acts as a convener, attracts outside resources, adapts and creates effective programs and products, trains neighborhood and nonprofit leaders, and advocates for policies that will improve the lives of low-income families. It works through a participative process relying upon its diverse board of directors and a network of partners, seeking out lasting solutions that enable low-income families to work toward economic self-sufficiency.

Step Up builds teams to work in these strategic areas:

Team goals for each of these areas are:

  1. To find or develop innovative approaches that work locally
  2. To draw upon the diverse perspectives represented by partner organizations and neighborhood leaders
  3. To identify policies and systems that are barriers to economic prosperity
  4. To mobilize resources for local organizations
  5. To assist individuals who are working to improve Savannah’s neighborhoods

Poverty matters in Savannah. Act now to end poverty.


Step Up Savannah appreciates the ongoing support of the City of Savannah, Chatham County, Georgia Power, Savannah Economic Development Authority, and the United Way of the Coastal Empire.