T H E   W H I T E   H O U S E

Welfare-To-Work Coalition Members

Help Site Map Text Only

Vice President

Adventist Community Services

Alpha Kappa Alpha*

Baptist Joint Committee*

Boys and Girls Clubs of America*

Communities in Schools, Inc

Daughters of Isis*

Elks Grand Lodge

General Board of Church and Society of the United Methodist Church

General Federation of Women's Clubs*

Goodwill Industries*

International Association of Jewish Vocational Services

Lions Club International*

National Civic League*

National Congress of American Indians

National Council of Jewish Women*

National Council of Negro Women*

National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA

National League for Nursing

National Urban Coalition*

Optimist International*

Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission*

The Congress of Black Churches

The Links Incorporated*

The Salvation Army*

United Way*

Women in Community Service

Women's Missionary Union*

YMCA of the USA*

YWCA of the USA

Members Profiles


Adventist Community Services (ACS) is a national relief and community action organization that operates though 233 local Community Service Centers, 28 Inner City programs, 19 community health screening projects, and 50 state offices. ACS provides services to help welfare recipients receive training and find jobs, including: case management, social services, support groups, literacy tutoring, basic education, job and life skills training, and job search and placement activities.

Since joining Vice President Gore's Welfare-to-Work Coalition to Sustain Success, ACS has launched a nationwide Tutoring and Mentoring Initiative with a satellite uplink seminar for all local units, including 2,000 Adventist churches that can co-sponsor local programs. This initiative provides after-school enrichment activities for children in families moving from welfare to work. More recently, ACS entered into a contract with the Corporation for National Service for 17 AmeriCorps VISTA national grants to organize community-based tutoring programs for children in need.

Thanks to the contributions of more than 12,000 volunteers, ACS has helped more than 4,000 former or current welfare recipients find jobs, and provided support services to about 300,000 welfare recipients. The following are some examples of local ACS welfare to work programs currently underway.

JobNet in Chattanooga Tennessee works directly with local employers and uses individualized placement, coaching and case management to ensure the success of individuals making the transition from welfare to work. JobNet has placed more than 1,200 clients in jobs since 1989.

Health Clinics for the Uninsured in Dayton, Ohio operates medical, dental and optical clinics specifically for the low-income families who are not covered by employer-sponsored insurance and earn too much to qualify for public assistance.

Empowerment Support Groups in Takoma Park and Silver Spring, Maryland conduct peer support networks called empowerment groups providing a forum in which clients help each other through life problems and situations.

Contact: John Gavin, (301) 680-6438


The Goodwill Industries network is comprised of 180 community-based organizations operating throughout the nation. In response to community needs, Goodwills offer a broad variety of services to individuals with barriers to employment, including welfare recipients. Services include vocational assessment, skills training, and employment opportunities.

Since joining Vice President Gore's Welfare-to-Work Coalition to Sustain Success, Goodwill has expanded their programs to accommodate individuals leaving the welfare rolls, providing services to an estimated 55,000 welfare recipients over the last year. Some examples of Goodwill job-training and placement programs include the following.

Goodwill Industries of Greater New York, Inc. provides orientation, assessment, referrals to job training and placement services. Goodwill Industries of Greater New York, Inc. will serve more than 10,000 unemployed New Yorkers, including welfare and Home Relief recipients at its Bronx One-Stop Center. In addition, Goodwill operates a welfare-to-work program, three Job Clubs, GED and ESL programs for public assistance recipients. During 1997, more than 600 of these recipients were placed into competitive, unsubsidized employment.

Goodwill Industries of Central Indiana, Inc. has operated FutureWorks, a program designed to assist the Indiana Department of Public Welfare to prepare welfare recipients for work or education since 1990. In l997, Goodwill served over 700 individuals, and estimates over 600 participants gained employment.

Goodwill Industries of Sacramento Valley, Inc. has provided vocational assessment services for the Sacramento County Welfare GAIN program for the past 10 years. These vocational assessments are designed to establish career goals and planning leading to employment for welfare recipients. Approximately 230 individuals are served annually.

Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Wisconsin, Inc. contracts with Kenosha County to lease and maintain the Kenosha County Job Center. Goodwill provides case management, motivational services, child care coordination and job placement.

Goodwill Industries of Atlanta, Inc. provides vocational assessment, career development and job readiness training, skills training in nontraditional occupations, and entrepreneurial training to women making the transition from welfare to work. New Choices for Women prepares low-income women for careers in the building trades -- jobs that provide a living wage, benefits, a career ladder and incentive to get off and remain off welfare. Last year, the average starting wage for graduates was $8.28 per hour after less than three months of training.

Contact: Michael R. Graul, (301) 530-6500


The International Association of Jewish Vocational Services (IAJVS), a not-for-profit trade association, links 23 social service agencies in the United States, Canada and Israel that provide a wide range of educational, vocational, and rehabilitation services. Through member agencies, individuals seeking to improve their lives gain access to a vast array of services such as career management, skills training, rehabilitation programs, and health services. According to the most recent annual survey, IAJVS affiliate agencies have served more than 19,000 welfare recipients from both the Jewish and non-Jewish communities during the last year.

The services and resources provided to help welfare recipients reach self-sufficiency range from job readiness and skills training and certification to support and retention services. Services are provided through a national welfare-to-work initiative administered by IAJVS as well as by affiliate agencies that participate as members in consortia in their communities or act as sub-recipients of local formula funds. Examples of some programs include the following.

Jewish Vocational Service, Boston; Jewish Vocational Service, MetroWest, New Jersey; Jewish Family and Vocational Service of Middlesex County, New Jersey; Jewish Vocational Service, Minneapolis; Jewish Family Service of the North Shore, Massachusetts; and Jewish Employment and Vocational Service, Philadelphia. In November 1998, the Vice-President announced that IAJVS, among other grantees, would receive competitive funding through the Department of Labor Welfare-to-Work program to support innovative welfare-to-work projects. Under the Welfare-to-Work competitive grant program, six member agencies participate in IAJVS' Regional Employment and Training Initiative (RETAIN) program. RETAIN is an integrated work and learning program that places long term welfare recipients into jobs in the health care industry. Each agency has created a network of local employers interested in hiring RETAIN clients. Employers include nursing homes, home health care providers, hospitals, health care manufacturers, pharmacies, and managed care organizations. In addition, several employers in Philadelphia, Minneapolis and North Shore provide training to RETAIN clients for home health care aide certification with opportunities to become a certified nursing assistant. The national RETAIN program expects to serve 545 clients by June 2001; to date, more than 50 clients have enrolled in RETAIN.

Jewish Vocational Service of South Florida (Miami) works with Lockheed Martin IMS to provide welfare-to-work employment opportunities to individuals in Miami Beach. Over 200 people have received job leads, job coaching and intensive retention services over the past two years.

Jewish Family and Career Services, Atlanta provides welfare-to-work services for TANF recipients in North Fulton County, GA. JFCS provides skills training, job placement assistance and other supports such as child care, work-appropriate clothing.

Jewish Vocational Service, Chicago operates a healthcare aide training program for welfare recipients. The program is listed with a local registry which has enabled more than 90 percent of the program graduates to find employment. Several recent graduates have enrolled in local colleges to obtain nursing degrees.

Gulf Coast Jewish Family and Mental Health Services, Clearwater, FL, runs the Noncustodial Parent Employment Project to help unemployed noncustodial parents establish a pattern of regular child support payments by obtaining unsubsidized employment. Major program services include court liaison, job development, supervised job search, job placement, case monitoring, and educational and vocational assessment.

Jewish Vocational Service, Los Angeles serves immigrants and refugees from the former Soviet Union, Armenia and Iran transitioning from welfare to work. Nearly 90 percent of the participants speak little or no English and the majority has no U.S. work experience. Utilizing its network of local employers, volunteer language tutors, and multilingual, multicultural professional staff, JVS/LA has enrolled over 300 participants and placed 75 percent of them in jobs since the program began in October 1998.

Jewish Vocational Service, San Francisco has teamed with Bank of America to offer proof operator and teller training, and with the Small Business Network and Juma Ventures to train welfare recipients for jobs in small businesses. These innovative programs provide work readiness and job-specific hard skills training, mentoring, and extensive retention support services.

Contact: Genie Cohen, (215) 854-0235


The Salvation Army has long recognized that a welfare check and charity are vital short-term interventions. They are limited in their ability to help people rise out of being in need unless complemented by: job training and referrals, support services, sustainable wages, benefits and job protection. The long term goal is to address poverty in all its ramifications. The Salvation Army is focusing on three areas: (1) developing and sharing replicable welfare to work models, (2) meeting basic needs more comprehensively, and (3) encouraging all local congregations to mentor one or two families. The Salvation Army has programs in more than 1,500 communities, including the following.

Adult Rehabilitation: In 175 communities, Salvation Army Adult Rehabilitation Centers prepare men and women with technical, emotional, social and spiritual skills to move from unemployment, chemical and social dependency to gainful, productive work and family responsibilities.

New Beginnings: The Salvation Army in Buffalo, New York, operates a program targeted to welfare recipients who lack skills needed to succeed in the workplace. The training curriculum addresses work attitude, punctuality, appropriate language and dress, interaction with co-workers and supervisors, and balancing family and work responsibilities. Participants can also take advantage of the on-site GED program and English as a Second Language classes. Long-term mentoring relationships with participants also nurture new skills and successes.

The Pregnancy Resourcing and Empowerment Program (PREP): PREP targets the needs of young mothers, many of whom have not completed their education. The curriculum teaches self-discipline, goal assessment, problem-solving, consistency, nurturing and self-sufficiency. The PREP program includes GED preparation classes, writing skills, literature, math, typing, introduction to computers, office skills, and business machines.

Project Break-Through: This program assists participants through mentoring. Each family works with a case manager and a trained and committed volunteer who serves as role model, friend, mentor and support system. The long-term relationship provides the stability needed to facilitate permanent change in the client's life.

Clothing Worx: This program provides former welfare recipients in the job market with work attire. Many communities across the country have adopted this model. For example, the Salvation Army in Fitchburg, Massachusetts, opened a job training program that includes mock interviews, discussion of posture, attitude and dress. The program provides acceptable clothing for job interviews.

Contact: Lt. Colonel Paul Bollwahn, ACSW, CSWM, (703) 684-5500


United Way of America is the national service and training center for more than 1,400 local United Ways around the country. United Way supports its members with research services, public policy, strategic planning, technical assistance in policy issues, and the coordination of resources. The mission of United Way is to increase the organized capacity for people to care for one another. The vast network of United Way volunteers throughout the country raises funds to support local agency service providers and assists them in the proper distribution of funds to help the people who are most in need.

Many United Ways have become leaders in their communities in promoting self-sufficiency and employment among their most needy populations. One focus of United Way is to transition welfare recipients to the workforce. Specific services that contribute to the successful transition include the following:

Job training and placement assistance: United Way of Metropolitan Nashville is working with Oprey Mills Corporation and the Rockefeller Foundation to provide job training and placement assistance to welfare recipients. The Oprey Mills Corporation is building a shopping center where, in conjunction with United Way, Oprey will welfare recipients and help them to find employment in the shopping center.

Child care: In conjunction with local agencies, the United Way of Greater Topeka, Kansas has established a child care referral system. This service informs and refers local child care facilities and programs to residents in need of child care.

Transportation: United Way of Hancock County and the Ohio Department of Transportation provide funds and services to the local Community Action Commission. The commission has enacted a transportation system that provides services to and from school and work for individuals with disabilities, or are low-income or elderly.

Supportive services: United Way of Greenville County, South Carolina has established a volunteer mentoring program entitled Family Ties. Family Ties pairs community members with current and former welfare participants to provide personal and professional guidance.

Contact: Ilsa Flanagan, (703) 836-7112 ext. 817


Women in Community Service (WICS) is a national nonprofit organization with more than 7,000 volunteers and staff nationwide. WICS has been mentoring economically disadvantaged workers since 1964, and their goal is to help entry-level workers overcome barriers and sustain employment. WICS' services help elevate job training success by personally preparing women and young adults for employment and independent living. Addressing critical issues such as housing, child care and transportation, WICS provides the margin of success for thousands of individuals each year. WICS has helped more than 500,000 individuals strive for self-sufficiency. Since joining Vice President Gore's Welfare-to-Work Coalition to Sustain Success, WICS has worked with more than 150,000 low-income individuals annually. WICS works with women on welfare, female offenders, homeless women and young, low-income individuals enrolled in job training programs to help them attain economic independence. Specific programs and services include:

Lifeskills: WICS operates a LifeskillsTM job-readiness program in several states across the country. Lifeskills is an intensive pre-employment program consisting of a comprehensive skills assessment, interactive life-management workshops, mentoring and community service work experience. WICS programs are located in homeless shelters, welfare offices, subsidized housing complexes and prisons nationwide.

Mentoring: WICS operates mentoring programs for welfare-to-work clients and young adults. WICS volunteers are trained as mentors and work with individual clients for a minimum of six months.

Workforce Preparation: WICS operates several WorkforcePreparation programs with young, low-income adults throughout the country focusing on the skills necessary to facilitate independent living. Class activities are led by a WICS Transition Specialist and topics include: consumer skills, survival nutrition, and interpersonal relationships. In addition, students engage in off-site visits to car dealerships, insurance agencies, grocery stores, apartment complexes and libraries in order to provide a non-threatening experience and build confidence in community interaction.

Support Services: WICS provides critical transition assistance to young adults across the country. WICS strives to create not only opportunities for skill building, but true youth-adult partnerships that allow for continued positive development. WICS volunteers serve as mentors, teachers, tutors and friends to these young adults in transition and provide assistance locating resources such as housing, transportation, job placement, and social, medical and legal aid.

Employer Services: Level One Solutions, WICS' Employer Services Division, works with small, mid-size and large corporations to help them develop internal mentoring programs for their entry-level workers. WICS also provides specialized workshops for supervisors and managers on coaching techniques for employees with little or no work history.

Contact: Angie Isidro Bresnahan (703) 671-0500 ext. 815, (800) 442-9427


Since joining the Vice President's Coalition, the Women's Missionary Union launched a special project called Christian Women's Jobs Corps (CWJC) with 40 sites nationwide to assist former welfare recipients and other women in learning life skills; completing their education; preparing for, obtaining and sustaining successful employment. Over the past year, CWJC has helped approximately 225 welfare recipients, and estimates that of the 2,000 individuals who will complete CWJC programs this year, 80 percent will be former welfare recipients.

Mentoring: Every CWJC client is matched with at least one trained mentor who has committed up to five years to work with an individual client.

Employment Training: CWJC prepares clients for the workforce, providing specific skills in areas such as computer literacy and medical technology. Mentors and site coordinators work with each client to secure internships and placements.

Life Skills: CWJC offers training in communication, conflict management, time management, parenting, nutrition. Basic education, GED preparation and English-as-second language classes are also available.

Support Services: CWJC also provides support services to women as they transition to the workforce. For example, some local sites provide child care at a reduced rate for CWJC clients. Transportation needs may be met through the use of bus vouchers or donated used cars. CWJC refers clients coping with substance abuse or domestic violence issues to appropriate programs and services so that women can overcome obstacles to success.

Contact: Trudy Johnson, (205) 995-4846


Over 2,200 YMCAs are located in nearly every community, working to meet the health and social service needs of 15 million men, women and children. As a nonprofit community service organization, YMCA is involved in welfare reform efforts in a variety of ways, including literacy and GED training, job training and placement, and family counseling for welfare recipients and working poor families. YMCA is also the largest non-governmental child care provider in the nation. About 500,000 children are involved in various YMCA child care programs. In turn, this enables about 700,000 adults to work and meet their personal responsibilities. In addition to providing direct services to youth and families, YMCAs participate on local and state commissions to help local governments develop effective and appropriate services that address the needs of low-income families.

The New City YMCA in Chicago provides parent and child literacy training, employability skill training, school-to-work transition services, an entrepreneurial training program, job training and placement services, child care and family counseling. They work in partnership with 200 companies in North River Industrial Corridor and also provide services to public housing residents in Cabrini Green, helping them move from welfare to work.

The Paris Community YMCA in Illinois has eight contracts with the Illinois Project Chance designed to assist families leaving welfare. Parents working 20 hours per week at the YMCA not only fulfill their welfare work requirements, but also gain work experience, job training, and references.

The Dorchester Family Branch of the YMCA of Greater Boston collaborated with the Codman Square Neighborhood Corporation to open the Linking Hands Childcare Center to address the needs of welfare recipients. The center is located in a low-income subsidized housing complex. YMCA trains and employs welfare recipients to become certified/licensed daycare providers.

Contact: Eden Fisher Durbin, (202) 835-9043


Women who have been on welfare and have family incomes at or below the poverty level are served by the YWCA through several programs. The YWCA provides employment services to 168,475 women, child care to 451,319 children, parenting and family services (including domestic violence and child abuse prevention education) to 503,914 participants, education to 73,238 individuals. One-third of these families served have annual incomes of $15,000 or less. Because of the YWCA's experience in helping women move from dependency to self-sufficiency, local YWCA affiliates are partnering with local governments to implement initiatives. Some successful YWCA welfare to work programs include:

YWCA of St. Louis, MO operates a Head Start Substitute Teacher Training program to assist Head Start parents on welfare. The program provides 40 hours of class instruction and 120 hours of classroom internship to prepare participants for entry-level employment at the YWCA's St. Louis County Head Start program and other area child care programs. Successful substitute teachers are eligible for full-time employment as Head Start Teacher Assistants with full benefits and tuition-paid education toward Child Development Associate certification. Since 1994, more than 80 Head Start parents have participated, 27 of whom have been hired as substitute teachers and 14 as teacher assistants.

YWCA of Topeka, KS collaborated with Goodyear Tire and Rubber and the Kansas Department of Human Resources to provide a comprehensive training program preparing women for non-traditional employment. Since 1994, 100 percent of the graduates were placed with an average wage of $13.99 per hour. More than 200 Topeka women have moved from welfare to self-sufficiency.

The YWCA of New Britain, CT partnered with the Walnut Hill Convalescent Home to develop the Certified Nurses' Aid Training program. Through this program, students gain vocational training and clinical experience. The clinical partner and a local hospital donate equipment and internship opportunities. Since its inception in 1994, more than 80 individuals formerly receiving assistance have graduated. The program has a 100 percent completion rate and 90 percent job placement rate.

President and First Lady | Vice President and Mrs. Gore
Record of Progress | The Briefing Room
Gateway to Government | Contacting the White House
White House for Kids | White House History
White House Tours | Help | Text Only

Privacy Statement

Welfare-To-Work Coalition

Coalition History

Coalition Members

Previous Conferences

Improving Mental Health