Last month, two local nonprofits were awarded $380,00 in grants to help those who are unemployed and underemployed in Tacoma to find quality jobs in growing industries. The Citi Foundation and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) awarded the money to Goodwill of the Olympics and Sound Outreach through the Bridges to Career Opportunities Initiative (Bridges), a $10 million three-year national effort to increase economic growth in communities.
“We are grateful that these two valued Tacoma organizations will be beneficiaries of the funding provided by the Citi Foundation and LISC,” said Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards. “With this support, Goodwill of the Olympics and Sound Outreach can ensure that even more Tacoma families are career ready and able to take on living wage jobs.”
Over the next three years, the money will be used to help job seekers increase income, improve credit, and raise quality of life. This will be done through skills training, career development, personal finance coaching, education courses, and access to crucial resources like transportation and child care.
An estimated 1,800 Tacoma workers will take advantage of the programs — alongside thousands more across the country.
“The demands of today’s U.S. job market are playing out in different ways for American workers and we need to support those who are being negatively impacted by the forces that are shaping the modern economy,” Ed Skyler, executive vice president for global public affairs at Citi, said in a statement. “By connecting programs that provide not only education and skills building, but support services for family and housing needs, we’re helping American workers who have been or are in danger of being displaced achieve success and contribute to their communities.”
Many enter the training program with a middle-school education level and are either unemployed or working part-time. Thanks to Bridges, in the last two years alone, 3,000 participants have been placed in jobs.
Today, Sound Outreach and Goodwill of the Olympics are among 40 community-based nonprofits nationwide that have been awarded funding through the program.