Jan 12, 2024
Goodwill Industries of West Michigan (GIWM) was recently awarded a $568,594 Barrier Removal and Employment Success (BRES) Expansion Grant from the Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity (LEO) to provide programming to support employment and reemployment of at-risk individuals, and to remove barriers to employment for low-income Michiganders. The two-year award to Goodwill is part of a $14.4 million grant shared with 26 other nonprofit organizations across the state.
“These funds will allow us to significantly expand our employment and training offerings, and boost our capacity for crucial wraparound support services such as housing, child care, and transportation,” said Goodwill Chief Workforce Officer Kristin Garris.
GIWM plans to add heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC); customer service; and forklift certification training programs to its current offerings of programming, with on-site child care services for enrollees. English as a second language (ESL) and literacy classes will also be offered.
“This funding allows us to powerfully move into providing meaningful opportunities that elevate people out of poverty and into good-paying jobs,” said Goodwill President and CEO Jeanette Hoyer. “Community partners will play an integral role in achieving our vision and we are so grateful for their involvement in fulfilling our mission of changing lives.”
TrueNorth Community Services recently established a Housing Assessment and Resource Agency (HARA) office inside Goodwill’s Career Center and will assist with housing needs. Read Muskegon will provide ESL and literacy classes, and United Way of the Lakeshore will assist with child care.
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