Recognizing that there was a strong need in East Oakland for programs that create opportunities for residents to gain valuable job skills that allow them to build wealth and prevent further displacement of long-term residents and their families, the Oakland City Council earmarked a $500,000 grant from EWD to support barber and cosmetology employment and training opportunities. The grant was awarded to The Brothers & Sisters Barber Cosmo Academy to provide Barber Instructor Program, Barber Crossover License, Cosmetology Crossover License, Manicurist Certificate and Refresher courses. Forty-four students, all people of color, completed the certification courses.
With support of a $200,000 in CARES Act funds from EWD, the Oakland Private Industry Council provided direct supportive services, webinars and peer presentations to Oakland residents who were laid off from their jobs. One-time grants of $600 directly to 132 COVID-impacted workers helped with rent, car payments, insurance, utilities, and groceries. About 75 percent of the grant requests were for rental and housing payments and utilities, or some combination of thereof. The program reached the vulnerable immigrant population with 9.1 percent of recipients identified as Permanent Residents and 2.5 percent holding valid Work Visas. Upwards of 235 impacted workers participated in the three multilingual webinars and four interactive peer presentations designed to assist them in finding a job by highlighting employment training and job placement services.
Community Development used $100,000 in CARES Act funds through an EWD
agreement to bring workforce development services to deep East
Oakland residents, with a special focus on unsheltered residents at their
CARE campus. Along with holistic support programs, services included employment
assistance, job readiness, job placements, employment retention, and
intensive case management. Investing in onsite enhancements allowed the group
to place a portable building on the campus to help those most in need. From March 2020 to December 2020, Lao Family staff provided
employment assistance to more than 165 individuals who were COVID-19
impacted. A total of 110 reentry individuals received stimulus funds while
participating in employment services and intensive case management. The
nonprofit successful implemented their first round of the Returning Citizen
Stimulus for the first 50 reentry individuals and they all received a total of
$2,750 per person in funds. The second round for an additional 60 reentry
individuals received $1,650 per person in funds.
The City of Oakland’s Workforce Development Board launched a free, online skills training platform offered by Metrix Learning. Taking courses can help Oaklanders improve a wide variety of skills, earn industry certificates, launch into new careers or advance up the career ladder. Metrix Learning offers more than 5,000 courses leading to over 180 industry certificates, with online classes in English, Spanish and Cantonese. Accessible 24/7, the self-paced courses allow users to take the classes when it is convenient for them. Register at: https://oakland.metrixlearning.com/ Funding to acquire the platform came from CARES Act dollars.