Interstate 5 Freeway Aerial Burbank California

Accelerating Guaranteed Income in California

Public Sector Solutions, Workforce & Economic Mobility


$35MInitiative that will launch seven new guaranteed income pilots throughout the state


State program providing no-strings-attached monthly payments to people with low income

The California Department of Social Services (CDSS) engaged Social Finance to support the design and launch of the California Guaranteed Income Pilot Program, a $35 million, five-year program that will enable counties, cities, tribal entities, and nonprofits across the state to provide no-strings-attached monthly payments to people with low income, with a focus on supporting those who are aging out of the extended foster care system or pregnant.


  • Develop a request for application (RFA) and review process for California local governments and nonprofits to apply for CDSS funds to administer localized guaranteed income pilots.
  • Assess and recommend RFA applicants.
  • Build and manage a separate pooled fund of philanthropic dollars for applicants in need of local match money or funding for specialized project measurement resources.
  • Provide implementation support to CDSS and local pilots.

The Work

  • RFA development: Created a focused yet flexible RFA that provides applicants strong guidance while lending them the flexibility and creativity to develop projects tailored to their respective communities.
  • Application assessment: Developed and managed a five-phased RFA application review and selection process with stakeholders from CDSS, Social Finance, and the Urban Institute.
  • Pooled fund creation and management: Raised and managed a pooled fund of philanthropic dollars to help RFA applicants, particularly those from the Central Valley, Northern California, and tribal nations, meet the RFA funding match requirements and subsidize specialized project measurement resources.
  • Implementation support: Providing technical assistance across all local pilots, including the creation of planning, onboarding, and cohort learning resources.

The Results

Social Finance has been a critical partner in our Department’s efforts to move forward policies that benefit Californians in need. The team brings expertise on creating programs that are person-centered, accessible, and streamlined.

Jennifer Troia

Chief Deputy Director, California Department of Social Services

Jennifer Troia Headshot

Partners and Supporters

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