Youth Workforce Development
Our Youth workforce development program, READY (Recruit, Employ, Advance and Develop Youth) is designed to provide a safe, structured and engaging environment to impart practical tools of employability to teenagers. The program offers youth character development by helping them realize a positive work ethic, and also introduces them to important concepts of business leadership and management. We have also found the importance of tutoring workforce trainees so that they are proficient in at least 6th grade level math and reading. READY has had over 250 teens come through the program. We are committed to placing teens in jobs. Those jobs range from our businesses to McDonalds to Olympia Entertainment. Our retention rate, i.e., how many have stayed on the job after one year is 64%.
The Neighborhood Jobs Pipeline
Currently there is a clear disconnect between residents of the Central Woodward/North End target area and employment opportunities both within and around the area. Even CW/NE residents with the training and skills necessary to be good candidates for available job openings are frequently not aware of and/or considered for those job openings.
The Neighborhood Jobs Pipeline is a new model of workforce development service delivery. It leverages local neighborhood support services and community based organizations to create a place‐based approach designed to be replicable in other areas. The initial pilot phase of the Pipeline proposes two broad initial strategies:
- First, developing a targeted set of employers who will work with the Pipeline to deepen their local hiring strategies. In the first year, the pipeline anticipates placing 80 – 100 residents in jobs with local employers and preparing many others.
- Second, developing networks and clear pathways for local residents in the Centers for Working Families in the CW/NE area, to link them more effectively to local and regional job opportunities.
The benefits of this place‐based Pipeline approach go beyond providing better results for residents searching for jobs. The Pipeline will also deliver a significant social return to the CW/NE community, increasing the stability and sustainability of both businesses and families in the target area clearly articulate the value proposition for local businesses, including:
- Reduction of human resources costs
- Better connection to employees who have been vetted and demonstrated ready to work
- Growth of goodwill and partnership with local organizations
- Development of local resident champions who frequent, promote and otherwise support local business’ and job providers’ interests
- Public recognition and positive publicity
MEGC’s Community Ventures Program
With funding from Michigan Economic Growth Corporation’s Community Ventures Program we have been able to employ 3 structurally unemployed men in our community. These employees have been placed in CDC’s Farm & Fishery, an aquaponics program.
Our Own Businesses
One of our primary goal of business creation is employment opportunities for community members. Typically our businesses employ 25-30 community members on a yearly basis.