United Way, Central Iowa Works to Serve 380 Job Seekers with Help from America’s Promise

department of labor logoThree-hundred-and-eighty individuals pursuing a career in health care will benefit from a four-year, $2.25 million grant from the U.S. Department of Labor to the United Way of Central Iowa. The funding, part of $111 million in America’s Promise grants made to 23 regional workforce partnerships, will double the capacity of Central Iowa Works to help individuals succeed in high-demand H-1B occupations in the healthcare field.

The project will target services to qualified individuals with an emphasis on veterans, refugees, individuals with criminal backgrounds, the underemployed, unemployed, and incumbents ages 18 or older–as well as WIOA, SNAP E&T and TANF-eligible recipients.

The average age of healthcare workers in central Iowa is 50, according to an Iowa Workforce Development report drawing attention to a growing need in the sector. Forty percent are expected to hit retirement age within the next five to 10 years. Those served by Central Iowa Works and United Way of Central Iowa, including those with barriers to education and employment, may be struggling with lack of a high school diploma or equivalency, limited English proficiency, disabilities, a criminal record, lack of transportation or affordable childcare.

Central Iowa Works is part of a national network of workforce intermediaries, funded in part by National Fund for Workforce Solutions, United Way of Central Iowa, DMACC and the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines.

The $2,248,968 America’s Promise grant is the largest in the United Way of Central Iowa’s 100-year history. In all, the $111 million in U.S. Department of Labor grants will help to connect 21,000 Americans to education and in-demand jobs.

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