FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
On May 7, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the awards for the FY2018 Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training (EWDJT) Program. The Missouri Job Center will receive $200,000 over three years to continue the Green for Greene program, which began in 2016 with an initial $200,000 EWDJT grant.
The grant is part of a $3.3 million grant package being distributed to 17 organizations nationwide.
Green for Greene recruits, trains and places individuals in full-time, sustainable, green jobs in a range of environmental fields. Since 2016, the program has provided training for more than 50 participants as well as résumé and interview preparation, career clothing assistance, soft skills training and budgeting. Nineteen graduates gained employment in the environmental field with an average hourly wage of $14.18 per hour. Two trainees chose to continue their education.
“We congratulate the city of Springfield for their continued success in our Environmental Workforce Development and Job Training program and look forward to the next graduating class of Springfield environmental specialists,” said EPA Region 7 Administrator Jim Gulliford.
The City of Springfield has a history of partnership with the EPA, including the City’s Brownfields Program, which works to assess, clean up and facilitate private development of potentially contaminated properties within the city of Springfield.
“We are pleased that the EPA recognizes the importance of the work the Missouri Job Center and its partner employers are doing to train Springfield’s workforce in ‘green’ jobs,” said City Manager Greg Burris. “This grant is a key component to addressing unemployment and under-employment in Springfield, while continuing to build a workforce that can reclaim and revitalize environmentally challenged properties. A grant like this is a double win — skilling up our future workforce in a way that will benefit our environment.”
Specific training certifications chosen for the 2019 program are: OSHA HAZWOPER; OSHA 10; Silica; Trenching and Excavation; Confined Space; Lead Renovation, Repair, and Painting; Lead Abatement Worker; Asbestos Worker/Handler; Flagger; Bloodborne Pathogens; Forklift Driver; First Aid/CPR; and Mold Abatement.
While Springfield’s Zone 1 residents are given priority admission, it’s not a requirement to live in Zone 1 to participate in the program.
“Green for Greene is a win-win for all involved. Not only do our graduates receive training to make them qualified employees for employers, but the jobs they receive help restore and revitalize the community that they live in,” said Senior Workforce Development Specialist Isaac Weber, who manages the program. “Our graduates are a testament that this five-week training for in-demand certifications and licenses can change lives by providing sustainable-wage jobs.”
Recruitment for qualified applicants will begin in the fall for 2019 classes. Those interested in the program can contact Weber at 417-841-3361 or [email protected] for more information. Additional information is available at facebook.com/GreenforGreene. Weber says he hopes to enroll 50 participants in the program for 2019.
Key partners in the Missouri Job Center’s implementation of the grant include Community Partnership for the Ozarks; Drew Lewis Foundation@The Fairbanks; the Neighborhood Advisory Council; Bryan University; Region Think; Carpenters Training Center; Environmental Works, Inc.; Gerken Environmental; Heavy Construction Laborers; Preferred Family Healthcare; Sun Solar; Sunbelt Environmental Services; Southwest Missouri Safety Company; and Ozark Region Workforce Development Board.
The Ozark Region Workforce Development Board and Missouri Job Center serve the counties of Christian, Dallas, Greene, Polk, Stone, Taney, and Webster. The Ozark Region boasts three Missouri Job Center locations (Springfield, North Springfield, and Branson), as well as a Mobile Career Center. The Ozark Region has a long history of working with job seekers and businesses to meet the workforce needs of our community.
For more information, please contact Isaac Weber, 417-841-3361 or [email protected].