Recent findings from the Dallas Poverty Task Force reveal what most living in North Texas known to be true: the gap between the haves and have-nots is widening. Many families struggle without access to near-by, well-paying jobs or financial and educational services within their community.
This summer, Transformance and a number of local nonprofit organizations are teaming up with the City of Dallas to create a new program designed to empower single-parent households in certain Dallas neighborhoods. CLASP, or Career Ladder Advancing Single Parents, will provide free training and certification for a new, growing career, as well as childcare, transportation, and social services to create a more sustainable financial future for these Dallas residents.
If you are a single parent living in Northeast Dallas (see the CLASP FAQs webpage for specific home ZIP code requirements), here are five reasons to enroll into CLASP:
1. Free training & certification
The adage “there’s no such thing as a free lunch” usually applies when tackling a new career. Training classes, materials, and certifications cost money, and if you don’t have an employer ready to foot the bill, that money is coming out of your pocket.
With CLASP, three local organizations – Mountain View College, Inspiring Tomorrow’s Leaders, and Wright Resource Group – are committing teachers and lessons to train four cohorts of 25 people or more in warehouse logistics. For two months, each cohort will meet regularly to learn a new skill, gain certification, and be ready to roll into a lucrative career in a growing industry in North Texas.
2. New career opportunities
Another CLASP partner, Workforce Solutions of Greater Dallas, recently identified logistics manager as an “occupation to watch,” projecting 1,280 job openings at an average salary of $43.89 per hour. Across the nation, America’s Career Infonet projects job growth increase through 2022 of 33 percent for cargo and freight agents; 21 percent for transportation and distribution managers; and 18 percent for expediting clerks.
With more Fortune 500 companies like Amazon and Toyota moving to North Texas, the demand for qualified personnel to meet these growing opportunities is overwhelming. The CLASP program will train participants to move into an entry-level position almost immediately, but at the same time introduce skills these participants will need to move into supervisory and management roles.
See how local nonprofits are joining the City of Dallas to fight poverty.
3. Higher potential salaries
Nationally, the economy has been moving to and beyond a $10 per hour minimum wage. Some U.S. communities are even discussing reducing that figure. But in Dallas, as the population increases and puts further strain on financial demands, minimum wage may not cut it for many families.
According to GlassDoor.com, warehouse logistics positions offer a wide range of salaries and benefits. Warehouse associates often earn between $10-$15 per hour. Supervisors and site managers can earn up to $60,000 per year. CLASP participants will move from training into an entry-level position at or above the $10-per-hour mark, and be well-positioned to grow their new job into a long-term career.
4. Flexible class schedule & location
Since the CLASP program caters to single parents, the training is limited to afternoon, evenings, and weekends. Some lessons are led by a certified instructor; other parts of the training are self-study. The training schedule enables parents to maintain a part-time job as they transition into a new, more lucrative career.
Most of the training classes will be held at Northwest Community Center in the Vickery Meadows neighborhood. This centrally located site offers greater access to participants traveling throughout northeast Dallas.
5. Access to additional services
As part of the CLASP partnerships, participants will have access to additional services such as food and rent assistance, reduced childcare services, and reduced or free transportation:
Services of Hope has spent more than a decade investing in the lives of residents through Dallas. Based on immediate and long-term need, they will connect families with food bank resources, and/or assistance on monthly items like rent or utilities.
Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas and Priceless Childcare have various programs that offer reduced or free childcare for participating families. Services are based on need and class availability.
Both Services of Hope and Workforce Solutions Greater Dallas can connect CLASP participants with free or discounted passes to DART buses and light rail. Transportation services are vital for those moving out of their comfort zone and into a new career.
Still not convinced CLASP is right for you? Call us at 1-800-249-2227 and we’ll do a quick needs assessment to see if you are eligible. (If you aren’t, we’ve also got plenty of other programs we can connect you with to help you and your family.) You can also review all the program requirements are our webpage, transformanceusa.org/clasp.