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Milwaukee Organizations Receive State Money To Help Boost Job Training

Money Is Part Of Gov. Walker's Investment Package Announced Last Summer

Basketball players
Mary Gash/AP Photo

Close to $500,000 was given to seven Milwaukee organizations Tuesday by the state Department of Workforce Development to help train and employ city residents. The money is part of the $4.5 million investment in the city Gov. Scott Walker announced last summer.

The announcement was a response to local leaders saying city residents needed access to opportunity following violent protests in the city’s Sherman Park neighborhood. Secretary of the state Department of Workforce Development, Ray Allen, said Milwaukee has a large pool of job seekers who need to be connected to the high number of open positions.

“The focus of these grants and the focus of these opportunities to help those individuals get into the workforce and get employed in family sustaining jobs is crucial to the economy of not only the city but the state also,” Allen said.

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He said this is the first half of $1 million devoted to Milwaukee worker training part of Walker’s investment package. There will be another round of applications to award the remainder of the grant money. The remaining $3.5 million will go toward rebuilding foreclosed properties and other job search programs.

Leondis Fuller is the program director at Word of Hope ministries, a recipient of $200,000 in grant money – the largest amount given to any of the seven recipients. He said these grants will help motivate city residents.

“This gives them the opportunity to come, step up to the plate and obtain the training to lift up their self-esteem,” Fuller said. “It also helps them understand that they are qualified to do these particular jobs.”

Fuller said the grant they received will allow them to train 300 people for open positions.

Milwaukee AHEC, St. Ann Center for Intergenerational Care, Employ Milwaukee, Great Lakes Community Conservation Corps, Abaxent LLC and Enoch Solutions Job Readiness & Career Assistance also received grant money.