Urban Upbound Launches New Jobs-Plus Program in Queensbridge
With nearly a million people out of the labor force, no other city in the United States has been hit as hard as New York during the pandemic. While all New Yorkers are still recovering from the pandemic, the impact was even greater for public housing residents. New York City’s Jobs-Plus Program combines employment services with financial counseling and community support for residents of NYCHA developments. Expanding on Urban Upbound’s existing employment and financial program, we are partnering with the City to launch the new Jobs-Plus Long Island City for the Queensbridge Houses residents.
Together with City Elected Officials, New York State Officials, Tenant Association leaders, and clients, Urban Upbound celebrated and announced the launch of the Urban Upbound Jobs-Plus program in our Queensbridge headquarters.
One of the clients who attended the launch event was Derek, who came to Urban Upbound 4 months ago with hopes of finding employment. Within a day of coming into our office, Derek was given the opportunity to work as one of the City’s Cleanup Crew members, cleaning the surrounding Queensbridge NYCHA grounds.
Derek currently works two jobs, but is now focused on finding one career path. He works with our employment coordinator to find a full-time job in a pay range that will allow him to replace both of his current positions and so that he can spend more time with his child. This time, Derek is specifically enrolled in our Jobs-Plus program. Beyond finding employment, Derek recently joined our “Job Club” to hone in on his soft skills. He knew the resources and staff would make the experience worthwhile but what he didn’t expect was to find a community. “I love the energy of the office,” he said, “you give me more confidence and make me believe that I can do anything I put my mind to.”
Finding new ways to support the hardest-hit communities requires recognizing a diversity of issues. At Urban Upbound, we approach these problems from a holistic perspective. While our employment team helps clients find jobs, Urban Upbound staff at large provide individual financial counseling, tax prep, credit building, and strategic solutions for worker-cooperative and small business owners. You can support our cause by donating here and you can learn more about our impact and work by following us on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Youtube) and subscribing to our newsletter.