Company Extends Partnership with DC DHS, Providing High-Touch Support to Those in Need
Washington, DC, March 15, 2019 – Grant Associates, a nationally acclaimed workforce development company, was selected to provide job placement and education and training services to Washington, DC residents receiving benefits under the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. TANF provides income eligible families in need with a combination of financial assistance and work opportunities so that they can eventually transition out of the program. Grant Associates has been a service provider for the DC TANF program since 2012, but this is the first time the job placement and education and occupational training programs have operated independently.
Administered and funded by the District of Columbia Department of Human Services (DHS), TANF provides financial support to families who are experiencing economic challenges. Approximately 15,000 District families receive TANF cash benefits each month, a reduction from over 17,000 six years ago. Of these, about 11,000 participants are required to engage in work, training or education activities.
Under the redesigned TANF program, education and training are operated and staffed independently from job placement services, allowing more tailored, individualized services for each customer. Job placement services for customers include:
- resume building
- job search workshops, and
- job search assistance including access to job listings and hiring events
Labor Market Information and access to computer labs and job referrals are also available to customers. One of the hallmarks of Grant Associates’ service model is to build proactive relationships with businesses, both for-profit and non-profit, that result in direct access to job opportunities leading to employment.
The education and occupational training services provided under the program aim to enhance customer training, education and occupational skill levels, preparing them to find and retain employment and achieve greater independence. Under the prior model, education and occupational skills training were provided alongside employment readiness and placement services, which often led to the education and training component being overshadowed by the push to place customers in jobs without clear career pathways. DHS has now purposely divided those distinct goals, enabling providers like Grant Associates to offer more high-touch engagements, not just with the customer but with their entire household.
In the first three months, Grant Associates has engaged over 150 customers in education and training programs, enrolled more than 75% of those customers into an education program, developed five customized training classes with providers and an in-house trainer to address skills gaps, and collaborated with DHS on connecting training programs to the six in-demand and high-wage industries. On the job placement side, of the 300 non-employed customers with which we are targeted to engage, we have already enrolled 91%, transitioning20% of them into permanent employment with a 72% retention rate after three months. High-wage employment opportunities are a focus of Grant Associates’ job placement efforts and have secured the highest hourly rate of $27.40/hour.
“While TANF Customers have a range of work experience, many are currently working jobs that don’t provide a viable living wage for their families,” said David Ross, Deputy Administrator of DHS. “The new TANF program is designed to offer incentives for families to increase their employability skills for entrance into competitive, high-demand career pathways.”
This new service delivery model brings with it a renewed focus on the importance of case management and a “Two Generation” approach to services. While customers often enter the program hampered by significant obstacles, case managers work with the entire family to address barriers, opening a world of possibility for each customer. The emphasis here is placed not only on taking the necessary steps that lead to employment with career pathways, but also addressing the needs of the entire family. Case managers conduct home visits and create individual service plans that include the needs of the family—everything from housing stability and education support to parenting needs, healthcare and more.
“We are very proud to be continuing our work to provide job placement, education and training services to the people of Washington, DC,” said Doug Cotter, President of Grant Associates. “We’ve seen some great successes in the community, developed strong relationships with businesses and other partners, and are eager to provide more in-depth and focused support to our customers and their families through this new service delivery model.”
Grant Associates, Inc.
Grant Associates is a national, award-winning workforce development company that has become a trailblazer and a force for innovation in delivering workforce services nationally. A certified Woman-Owned Business, we have operated nearly 80 different programs in communities of all sizes that reflect our strength across the spectrum of workforce development: operating full-service One-Stops, sector-based initiatives, business centers, and programs that serve those on public assistance, as well as other targeted populations such as youth, justice-involved, veterans and the disabled. For more information visit: www.grantassociatesinc.com.