The Working Cities Challenge is a competitive grant program administered by the Boston Fed and designed to get the public, private and nonprofit sectors in Massachusetts’ postindustrial Gateway Cities working together to solve economic challenges.
In June, the Boston Fed announced that Springfield will receive $475,000 in Working Cities Challenge grant money for programs linking low-income residents to the in-demand training needed for jobs that often go unfilled.
Springfield WORKS, a collaboration by city, community, education, and employer leaders to develop strategies to transform the region’s workforce ecosystem, was funded with a three-year grant from the Boston Federal Reserve Bank’s Working Cities Challenge grant. One concrete application of those strategies, an innovative job portal, was launched with fanfare last week during an event at Tower Square.
The program seeks to unlock community-driven responses to local obstacles, and promote economic development opportunities through partnership-building, problem solving, and shared accountability in urban centers.
The state awarded $500,000, including $75,000 to Springfield Works, through the Urban Agenda Grant Program designed to promote economic development in Massachusetts through the building of community partnerships in addressing obstacles to employment.
More than just a job listing, SkillSmart has the ability to tell job seekers who are turned for a job what qualifications they are missing. And it puts them in touch with the agencies or programs that offer that training.