Pop-Up Shop Update
At the last Roundtable meeting the Southwest Partnership discussed an offer they had received from Pigtown Main Street to partner on a clothing and sewing supplies pop-up shop opportunity with them and a clothing manufacturer and distributor with excess inventory. Pigtown Main Street would provide the space on Washington Blvd, and the SWP or a workforce provider would staff and manage the store. St Peter’s Adult Learning Center expressed interest and is working with the Foundry Church on the Project.
Training and Job Referral Process Update
The Southwest Partnership has been working with free training programs to recruit area residents, and the University of Maryland Baltimore and the University of Maryland Medical System have been developing a program to take direct referrals from community workforce partners for open positions. In a month or so the referral tracking process will be more robust. Lisa asked that all referrals for positions at UMB and UMMS include the resident’s name, the job ID number that they are applying for, and their zip code in the body of the email.
Referrals for the training programs have come in from Paul’s Place, Training Tuesdays (held twice a month from 2-3 pm at the Employment Connection Center and the UMB Community Engagement Center) and community flyers and referrals. Elizabeth will follow up with Clay Pots to see if they have any referrals and what we can do to support the referral process.
Some of the training programs have been struggling to fill all of the slots in programs. Bon Secours has had people who have applied but have not gotten in, and they are tracking those people and providing them services through their programs. The Mayor’s Office of Employments Development could provide information about residents of the area who applied for training programs and were not accepted–Lisa asked the members of the Roundtable how they could provide support/placement for those residents.
MOED Neighborhood Outreach RFP
There has been an RFP released by MOED for neighborhood outreach and workforce development. Because Bon Secours was previously funded under the job skills training RFP they are ineligible for the current program. A workforce program or agency needs to be the lead partner with a strong, funded partnership with a community based organization.
Public Allies, an Americorps program based out of the UMB School of Social Work approached the Southwest Partnership about applying for the grant. Public Allies’ motto is ‘Everybody Leads’ and they recruit young people from urban areas who are un or underemployed to work in nonprofit and community based organizations while receiving leadership and professional development training. This grant would allow Public Allies to provide 25 placements at non-profits that could commit to hiring the Allies after the year was finished but may not be able to afford the cost of an Ally.
Additionally, the SWP would receive funding to provide stipends to community mentors who would not only work directly with the Allies but would support them in developing recruitment and outreach programs that would recruit other area young people into the MOED funded training and other workforce development programs. Eric expressed a concern that the project wasn’t a perfect fit for the grant as an improved outreach strategy directly to the training programs, but it is an innovative way of connecting area young people with existing workforce development opportunities. The Roundtable was in favor of pursuing the grant with Public Allies.
School Based Workforce Outreach
Jeanne Cooper is based at the Historic Samuel Coleridge Taylor as the Director of Anchor-Based Workforce Development through the Center for Urban Families. She works within the school to support parents in their job placement and workforce development needs and to connect them with jobs and resources. She has developed a number of programs to engage students in recruiting family members for her services, such as story time, and is planning a Job Expo for April 25th. If the Job Expo is a success, the Roundtable is interested in planning ones for the SWP area schools.
Bon Secours is working with a temp agency to place folks with call center jobs, as well as a landscaping business in Dundalk that is in immediate need of workers.