Each of us has our own strengths and challenges, things we can learn and things we can share. TWG is a new program, working to bring together participants to inspire growth, foster connections and build upon strengths to achieve long term goals; to encourage collaboration between employers, community, neighbors, people.
The objective of TWG is to “shorten the food line” by empowering targeted individuals to set goals to begin to change their lives from food insecure to food secure. TWG works with accepted participants to identify their needs, set goals and develop a plan to accomplish their goals. After participants’ plans are set, two tracks occur simultaneously 1) casework and supportive services and 2) training, job placement and ongoing workplace support.
During the casework and supportive services track, participants work with an Individual Development Specialist to jointly identify and address barriers in any aspect of the participant’s life that may be preventing stable employment. A service plan is developed to address those barriers through resources, training, counseling and education that empower the participants to meet those needs, as well as potential needs in the future. While the program participant is the focus of this program, Together We Grow will also address needs of the family unit.
During the job training, placement and ongoing supportive services track, participants will work with a Professional Development Specialist to identify their workplace strengths, as well as areas for growth. What makes TWG so unique is that areas for growth will be addressed through experiential training - participants will participate in project based learning, taking responsibility for planning, developing and managing a community garden during their training phase. This garden will also facilitate participants’ understanding of the impact food choices has on health, finances, etc.
From July 1, 2021- June 30, 2022 25 participants across 3 cohorts reported a 251% increase in net income for participants.
After participants are matched with a favorable job, the Individual and Professional Development Specialists continue contact with participants as needed to assist with training, resources and support to eliminate potential setbacks in employment stability.