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2/20/2014 - The WorkPlace receives $10K grant for long-term unemployed

The WorkPlace has received a $10,000 grant from First Niagara Bank’s charitable foundation to support the organization’s nationally recognized Platform to Employment (P2E) program.

Featured on CBS’s 60 Minutes, the program is a proven model  demonstrating that the right job readiness programming, combined with personal and family support services and financial counseling, can return the long-term unemployed to the workforce.

First Niagara’s grant will support the public-private partnership, which gives business owners a risk-free opportunity to evaluate and consider hiring candidates during an eight-week experience program.

“We’re thrilled to have First Niagara’s support for our P2E program, which provides the long-term unemployed with the tools needed to re-enter the workforce, and helps participants find and secure trial job placements with local companies,” said Joseph Carbone, The WorkPlace president and chief executive officer. “With support from community partners like First Niagara, we’re confident that the P2E model will be successful in putting the long-term unemployed back to work in cities across the country.”

Carbone and First Niagara’s Senior Vice President of Community Development Paul McCraven attended a summit on Jan. 31, at the White House, where President Barack Obama outlined new efforts to assist the long-term unemployed. During his remarks, which are available on the C-SPAN web site, the president recognized nonprofit organizations, like The WorkPlace, that have a measurable impact on unemployed job seekers.

The P2E program offers individuals a five-week preparatory program, including skills assessment, career readiness workshops, employee assistance programs and job coaching. Upon program completion, The WorkPlace helps participants find open positions at local companies, and funds a trial-placement, where employers can assess the candidate’s performance. The expectation is that if the company is satisfied, a full-time job will ensue.

McCraven said the bank’s support for The WorkPlace was a natural fit, given its presence in the state and widespread support for community programming in the regions it serves.

“After attending the White House summit and hearing firsthand accounts of the people that have benefited from these programs, I have an even greater appreciation for The WorkPlace and its mission,” he said. “We’re proud to support Platform to Employment in Connecticut.”

For more information on applying for or supporting P2E, visit or call 203-610-8500.