Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Training to Work - Adult Reentry Program Grants Announced

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) announced the availability of $20 million in grant funds for the Training to Work – Adult Reentry Program aimed at helping adult inmates receive employment training in preparation for re-entering the workforce.

DOL has invested in several “workforce reentry” programs in recent years in an effort to help ex-offenders successfully reintegrate into their communities and the workforce. According to the Notice of Funding Available (NOFA), evidence from past programs indicates that ex-offenders have a better chance of obtaining employment and achieving a higher degree of career growth if they acquire industry-recognized credentials. Furthermore, reentry appears to be more successful when supportive services, including job training, are provided prior to release.

Based on lessons learned from previous programs, the Training to Work-Adult Reentry program will provide training and employment services for inmates age 18 and older enrolled in state and/or local work-release programs. Other work release programs can be offered to offenders who are nearing the end of their terms and looking for reintegration into community life, with a possible offer of full-time employment once the offender is released. Ultimately, these programs aim to help individuals attain industry-recognized credentials for jobs in demand industries prior to their release in an effort to help them successfully reenter the workforce. Grantees must provide: 1) job training that leads to industry-recognized credentials for in demand industries; 2) employment preparation that helps participants get a job including mentoring; and 3) assistance connecting to supportive services.

DOL anticipates making 15 grants of up to $1.4 million each for a period of 39 months. Eligible applicants include any non-profit organization in an area with high-poverty and high-crime rates. For the purpose of grant, communities with high-poverty rates are defined as those with poverty rates of at least 30 percent and communities with high-crime rates are those where the felony crime rate is higher than the felony crime rate of the overall city. For more specific information about these rates and the application process, please click here. Applications are due May 2, 2013.

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