Posted on: Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Grants Fund New and Expanded Programs
Although Goodwill® relies primarily on donations to fund its job training and placement programs, grant money also provides an important source of funding for specialized services. Three recent grants are helping Goodwill of North Florida provide services for military veterans, women with disadvantages, and taxpayers with low incomes.
‘Beyond Jobs’ program for women
Goodwill of North Florida received nearly $152,000 through a Walmart Foundation grant to provide job training and placement services to women over the next two years. The grant is part of a total of $7.7 million that the foundation provided to 49 Goodwills nationwide for the Beyond Jobs program that services unemployed and underemployed women.
“Each woman in the program will receive a complete career assessment, including job training, placement services and additional support to help them achieve economic security and advance in their careers,” said Linda Lewis, Goodwill of North Florida’s Vice President of Workforce Development.
Once participants are placed in jobs, they receive support to retain them, to further their education, and to advance in careers within their chosen industries.
Long-term unemployment among women remains a problem, both locally and nationwide. Only 26 percent of the women who lost their jobs during the recession have regained them, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Last year, more than one out of four women was still looking for work after more than a year of job hunting.
Lewis said Goodwill of North Florida hopes to continue providing the services through its Job Junctions even after the Walmart grant period has expired.
Job training for homeless veterans
To help homeless U.S. military veterans achieve financial stability, Goodwill of North Florida is receiving approximately $29,000 in U.S. Department of Labor funding through the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program. The money is part of a larger grant awarded to the City of Jacksonville.
Goodwill Job Junctions will provide employment training and case management for approximately 200 veterans and also provide money for essential items such as work boots, clothing and bus passes that help them find and keep jobs.
Filing federal income taxes can be a daunting — and expensive — proposition. But it doesn’t have to be. Goodwill of North Florida is participating in a federal program to spread the word about the MyFreeTaxes program.
The MyFreeTaxes Partnership provides free state and federal tax preparation and filing assistance for qualified individuals. It’s easy, safe, secure and 100 percent free. Powered by Walmart — in cooperation with Goodwill Industries International®, National Disability Institute, and United Way Worldwide — the MyFreeTaxes Partnership’s online and in-person tax preparation and filing services have helped 4.5 million families claim nearly $6 billion in tax credits and refunds since 2009. Tax-filing software is provided by H&R Block.
Goodwill of North Florida will receive about $20,000 to promote the program over a period of seven months. “Primarily, we’re encouraging people with income of under $57,000 to do their taxes for free online rather than paying someone to do it for them, and also to take advantage of the earned income credit if they qualify,” says Linda Lewis.
Qualified taxpayers can visit Goodwill Job Junctions to receive computer instruction and complete their taxes. The centers will be open extended hours during the week and on Saturdays in mid January through the end of tax season.