That hole on the resume is daunting. In hindsight, it’s tempting to wish that you filled some of that time with an enriching activity– a job or a class or an internship, but what do you do when you really feel like you need to start from scratch? Building up work experience can be challenging, especially when the competition for most jobs is so stiff.
Recognizing the difficulty of entering the workforce, the Department of Labor is awarding $39.7 million in grants to help individuals with significant barriers to employment. The grants especially hope to attract low-income non-custodial parents and ex-offenders through Enhanced Transitional Jobs Demonstration programs.
Transitional jobs may not provide long-term solutions, but they help people get some real, documented job experience. The grants expect to help 3,500 people gain more self-sufficiency and long-term success in the workforce.
“This grant provides needed support to individuals who face significant obstacles to employment,” said Secretary of Labor Hilda Solis. “This assistance allows program participants to provide for themselves and their families and establishes a clear pathway to financial stability and independence.”
Each grant covers a period of up to 48 months, including approximately three months for initial implementation, up to two years for enrollment, and 12-21 months of activity for the 500 program participants per grantee randomly assigned to receive enhanced transitional jobs services.
Among the recipients of the national grants are: Young Women’s Christian Association of Greater Milwaukee, Goodwill of North Georgia Inc., and the City and County of San Francisco.