Published On: Tue, Apr 20th, 2021

Palm Beach County Community Services Department Grants Funding to Community Partners of South Florida to Create Pathways to Economic Mobility for 300 Families

New workforce development program takes aim at “fiscal cliff” to eliminate generational poverty in Riviera Beach and West Palm Beach low-income ZIP codes

 Boca Raton, FL – Palm Beach County Community Services Department has awarded CPSFL a two-year $357,000 grant through the Securing Our Future Initiative to work with 300 families in the 33407 and 33404 zip codes in Riviera Beach and West Palm Beach to increase opportunities for economic mobility and end generational poverty. Families with children 18 years old or younger will be eligible for the pilot workforce development program that connects parents to jobs, internship opportunities and apprenticeships, and provides wrap-around programming offering financial education, coaching and tools for each family to create its own action plan. CPSFL’s primary partners in the program are Northend RISE and the Riviera Beach Community Development Corporation. Other important partners working in collaboration with CPSFL are Healthier Neighbors and BRIDGES at West Palm Beach.

A key premise of the program is coaching individuals to pursue higher paying jobs while managing the “fiscal cliff” that causes low-wage workers to lose government support for child care, healthcare and other social services once their incomes rise. CPSFL’s comprehensive

system of supportive services, including housing, mental health services and community services will be a strategic benefit to families as the agency works with them to move up the job and income ladder and overcome the uncertainty of moving away from financial aid.

“Many families face systemic obstacles to becoming self-sustaining,” said Scott Hansel, CEO of CPSFL. “We are grateful to have been selected by Palm Beach County Community Services Department to engage in the work of the Securing Our Future Initiative to create a wrap-around program that helps families move beyond the surrounding socioeconomic factors that stand in their way. Employment opportunities are the first step.”

The program aims for program participants to obtain higher paying jobs, become self-employed, or open their own small businesses. A unique incentive feature provides a matched savings program at a 1: 1 ratio of up to $1,000 that participants may use for education or the purchase of a longer term asset that will support them in their new career, such as buying equipment for a trade, a vehicle, or costs for opening a new business.

The grant will fund two new job coaching positions at CPSFL dedicated to the initiative. Expanding into workforce development is a natural fit for the agency and its focus on comprehensive economic development for families and communities.

“Community Partners of South Florida has earned a strong reputation for their work in eliminating generational poverty in Palm Beach County,” said James Green, Palm Beach County Community Services Department director, a partner of the Securing Our Future Initiative, along with Birth 22 United for Brighter Futures and the Citizens Advisory Committee on Health & Human Services (CAC/HHS). “They will be a strategic ally that looks at each family’s unique challenges and aspirations to develop an action plan that will help them achieve a higher quality of life for themselves, their children and future generations.”

CPSFL plans to begin offering services for the new program in May 2021.

About Community Partners of South Florida
Community Partners of South Florida is a $16 million comprehensive community development nonprofit agency headquartered in Riviera Beach that provides services to families facing social, emotional and financial adversity. By using a unique, breakthrough approach integrating housing and financial empowerment, child and family mental health, and community services, Community Partners creates self-sustaining families and communities and serves as a driver for growing its local economy.  For more information about Community Partners of South Florida, visit cp-cto.org. Community Partners is a proud chartered affiliate of Neighborworks America, a national, nonpartisan nonprofit striving to make every community a place of opportunity. For more information on Neighborworks America, please contact Hilary Rowe Wiley at [email protected].

About Securing Our Future

Securing Our Future is an initiative in partnership with Birth 22 United for Brighter Futures and the Citizens Advisory Committee on Health & Human Services (CAC/HHS) that seeks to create pathways for economic mobility for families with children ages 0-18 who are living below 200% of the federal poverty level (FPL) with a special emphasis on families that are 100% or below FPL and have the ability to work.

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