Goodwill, the leading nonprofit provider of job training and placement services in North America, announced five new partners — Accenture, Bank of America, Comcast Internet Essentials, Lowe’s and USAA — are joining its Rising Together initiative, expanding its reach and impact. While the US economy continues to improve, the recovery has not been equitable. Rising Together is connecting people, particularly those who traditionally faced barriers to sustainable, well-paying jobs, to ensure they have access to a wide range of resources. These resources include skills training, job placement, transportation and internet access.
Launched in May 2021, this growing collective of committed Industry leaders, including global leaders, philanthropic leaders and Fortune 50 companies, are working to empower more than one million individuals with sustainable careers by 2025. The new partners join the Anthem Foundation, Coursera, Google, Indeed and Lyft in their work with Goodwill to advance equitable opportunities for all people by providing individuals with the skills and critical services needed to access sustainable jobs — stable, well-paying careers with potential for growth.
“The accelerating transition in our labor market is creating opportunities for people to move into higher-paying, more promising career tracks. With employers eager to hire, we are working with people to help them get the skills they need to succeed,” said Steven C. Preston, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. “We’re proud to announce these new partners in Rising Together as they are helping to provide access to skills training and other holistic support to people looking to invest in better futures for themselves and their families.”
Rising Together has already helped people in 33 states and Canada access job training and placement programs, transportation services, and more that provide the skills and other services people need to both enter and stay in the workforce. The initiative is now expanding its engagement to include 93 communities across the US and Canada.
With the addition of the new partners, Rising Together is growing to include more local Goodwill communities and will provide more opportunity to gain digital skills training, healthcare career development, virtual reality interview practices and more.
Rising Together partners are using their combined resources to support the holistic needs of all job seekers. Together with Goodwill:
- Accenture will expand its Skills to Succeed services for youth and young adults, which provides skills training and resources to help them navigate their careers. The program also uses immersive virtual reality training to help people impacted by the criminal justice system learn to tell their stories on a personal level to interviewers and other people in their lives.
- Bank of America is supporting Goodwill career coaching, digital skills navigation, financial planning, and supportive services to program participants so they can map their career interests to labor market needs in their region and identify local training programs. Additionally, Bank of America’s Pathways Program will also partner with select local Goodwill locations to hire individuals for employment at the company.
- Comcast Internet Essentials will provide digital skills and workforce development training for thousands of adults with low incomes. In addition, the program will install free WiFi access in Goodwill locations to enable people to get online to search for and apply for jobs as well as take digital skills training and certification programs to prepare for entry- and mid-level occupations.
- Lowe’s will implement skilled trades career programs at Goodwill nonprofit organizations located in Atlanta, GA, Austin, TX; Baltimore, MD; Houston, TX; and Nashville, TN. Lowe’s will work with the Goodwill organizations to develop training programs to meet their community employment needs. This one-year training initiative has the goal of skilling and supporting workers in the construction, logistics and transportation fields. The program will train more than 200 skilled trades workers by the end of the year. In addition, Goodwill will support the work of the Lowe’s-led Generation T movement to raise awareness and interest in the skilled trades among youth and adults.
- USAA has provided philanthropic support to Goodwill to place 70 Black and Hispanic veterans and military spouses in sustainable careers by September 30, 2022. The grant awarded to Goodwill will also help youth and young adults enrolled in Goodwill’s Operation: Achieve program to attend post-secondary STEM training to obtain professional credentials.
Building on work launched last spring:
- Anthem Foundation launched and is expanding a healthcare career path training that will continue to benefit thousands over the next year. The program builds healthcare employee pipelines while supporting healthcare workers affected by the pandemic, and the training leads to credentials, job placements, wage increases and benefits.
- Coursera, through its social impact program, has donated 2,000 scholarships to those hard-hit by the economic turndown, including people who are impacted by the criminal justice system, veterans and underserved high schoolers. Scholarship recipients have free access to more than 5,200 courses as well as hands-on projects and Professional Certificates that teach job-relevant skills across in-demand business, technology and data science fields.
- Google.org is continuing to support Goodwill in its efforts to deliver digital skills training across the U.S. through programs such as Google Career Certificates, which help job seekers prepare for in-demand jobs within three to six months without the need for a college degree or prior experience. Since 2017, more than 100 local Goodwill organizations have implemented the Goodwill Digital Career Accelerator® in their communities, equipping more than one million people with digital skills and placing more than 299,000 individuals to obtain employment or advance in their careers.
- Indeed is helping job seekers who are often overlooked or face challenges to finding work with skills-based assessments, job seeker support and employer hiring events. As part of Indeed’s Environmental, Social and Governance commitments, they are also pledging with Goodwill to help 30 million people facing challenges secure employment by 2030. In 2022, Indeed announced the Essentials to Work program to connect job seekers with barriers to crucial services for employment including technology, transportation and record clearing through the help of partners like Goodwill.
- Lyft is continuing to invest in its LyftUp Jobs Access program, which launched in 2019 with a coalition of partners including Goodwill, to provide job seekers access to the transportation they need to get to interviews, job training and/or the first few weeks of work through cars, bikes and scooters. To date, the program has supported job seekers with access to more than 30,000 rides.
“Accenture and Goodwill share a longtime commitment to creating life-changing and more inclusive opportunities for people,” said Jimmy Etheredge, Accenture’s CEO of North America. “We’re grateful to continue our collaboration and look forward to helping even more people acquire skills, gain access to good jobs and build sustainable careers — elevating themselves and their communities.”
“Cross-sector partnerships are critical to prepare individuals with the necessary skills and resources required to advance their careers and create economic mobility,” said Andrew Plepler, global head of Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) at Bank of America. “Alongside Goodwill and other partners, we’re collaborating to create a more diverse and equal workforce.”
“Stable, reliable internet access is a life-changing pathway for individuals to develop the skills needed to secure consistent and well-paying careers that will grant opportunity for economic mobility and sustainability,” said Broderick Johnson, executive vice president, public policy and executive vice president, digital equity, at Comcast Corporation. “Everyone deserves the right to thrive economically, and access to internet connectivity and devices is absolutely critical in bridging the digital and skills gap.”
“As a large employer focused on economic recovery, we know that the increasing use of technology and automation across industries like manufacturing and construction will spark both great advances and a widening skills gap within the labor force. Bridging this gap is key to our ongoing partnership with Goodwill,” said Marvin Ellison, chairman and CEO of Lowe’s. “Our collaboration with Rising Together will address this gap by providing more skills-building opportunities for workers, which will empower and equip them to make meaningful contributions to their companies and communities for years to come.”
“Veterans bring deep expertise and discipline to the corporate world, yet many struggle to find a job after they leave the military – a challenge that has been compounded through the pandemic,” said Wayne Peacock, CEO of USAA. “Through the Rising Together initiative, we will be able to support and empower Goodwill organizations through the Opportunity Accelerator program to provide more veterans and military spouses access to meaningful career training programs and employment prospects.”
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