Nehemiah Project Update (Lou Packett)
Lou provided an update on the Nehemiah Project, a proposal to use an upcoming housing development project in Franklin Square to train and employ area residents in the construction trades. He held a meeting with the developers of the project (a group called the Social Impact Development group), to discuss their progress and what would need to be done from their perspective to move the project forward.
The project is moving forward, and the timeline for implementation is far enough in advance that there is time to plan. Training partners need to be identified who will take the lead on training folks from the area for jobs on the project. Jumpstart, Habitat for Humanity, and Second Chance have all expressed interest. Lou will follow up with the workforce and training providers about their next steps.
Southwest Works Updates
School Resource Fairs
There was a talent show at James McHenry, with a resource fair component, which indicated that dedicated, well advertised workforce development resource fairs will be more effective in recruiting families of students at area schools for programs. The schools that have expressed interested both indicated that they would prefer mornings, around drop off. Rachel and Elizabeth will follow up with the two schools that expressed the most interest to schedule.
Publicity and Outreach
The Roundtable discussed outreach and publicity strategies for Southwest Works. Rachel will be attending neighborhood association meetings, and the SWP will be able to send out regular electronic recruitment blasts and social media posts. Lisa is looking into having door hangers produced. Other possible outreach strategies suggested were schools, neighborhood canvassing, and barber shops.
Ellen suggested potentially incentivizing participants to refer others to the program.
A new step has been added to the anchor referral program. Area residents who have been referred to positions at UMB and UMMC will see Rachel for a screening interview or Lisa if they were referred by Rachel. Once screened they will be referred to the appropriate HR representative.
Davi raised a concern that if Rachel was seen as a gatekeeper that might impact negatively on the program as a whole. The Roundtable discussed possible alternatives. Ellen suggested that having a clear rubric for the screening interviews would help folks have something constructive to work on if they weren’t ready yet to be referred. Darryl offered to shared Bon Secours interview rubric.
Resource Guide (Joanne Nathans)
Joanne and Schlonte met with the United Way in regards to their 211 program. 211 has much of the same information as the resource guide, and is updated once a year. The United Way folks thought that the printed resource guide had value (and would have the 211 number prominently displayed), and the SWP can assist with the yearly updating of 211 and manage the yearly updating of the Resource Guide.
The Resource Guide is easily printed. The Center for Urban Families has offered to print the first run. Joanne will request 500 from them and after that individual programs can print their own or ask the SWP for copies.
NPower is recruiting for their second cohort of 18-25 year olds interested in technology training. Contact Lorraine at email@example.com for more information.
Richard Parker: AFSCME is working with UMMC to recruit large numbers of folks for food and environmental services. He will follow up with Rachel and provide more details later.
Darryl Lee: send referrals for folks interested in security or landscaping positions to firstname.lastname@example.org