• Workforce Development Board of Ventura County Secures Multiple Programs To Address Barriers to Employment and the COVID-19 Pandemic's Impact on Ventura County's Workforce

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    December 21, 2020
    The Workforce Development Board of Ventura County (WDB) was awarded a $315,000 grant by the State of California Employment Development Department to implement a National Dislocated Worker Grant (NDWG) to address the COVID-19 pandemic's impact on the Ventura County workforce.
    The funding will aid Ventura County's response to COVID-19 by providing opportunities for employment and training services to individuals who are unemployed or underemployed as a result of the pandemic and who are unlikely to return to work in their previous occupations.  Services include training and job placement in in-demand careers, especially those where there is an increased need due to the impact of COVID-19.
    The funding will also enable the WDB to provide applicant referrals to local employers, job placement assistance in high-demand sectors, job readiness workshops to build soft skills, and help with career planning through individual employment plans and online career workshops.
    “As unemployment benefits come to an eventual end, we anticipate a large number of workers in Ventura County will be in need of career services and training in order to get back to work," says Rebecca Evans, WDB executive director. "This program focuses specifically on workers laid off in the wake of the pandemic and provides opportunities for employers who are hiring to benefit from a trained and supported workforce.”
    The WDB of Ventura County is a partner of America's Job Center of California network.  Individuals interested in receiving employment assistance should register with America's Job Center of California by calling 805-204-5186 or emailing AJCC-VenturaCounty@ventura.org.  For those with limited hearing or speaking, dial 711 to reach the California Relay Service (CRS). America's Job Center of California offers no-fee employment services and training resources and will guide applicants through the registration process.
    COVID-19 National Dislocated Worker Grant
    Additionally, as the COVID-19 pandemic hit earlier this year, the WDB of Ventura County applied for workplace grants as soon as they became available.  In April, the WDB was awarded a $450,000 grant through the Employment Development Department's Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act 25% Dislocated Worker Funds. Funds went to support services that helped individuals impacted by COVID-19. These included providing equipment necessary to telework and assistance with housing, utilities, childcare, and transportation.
    SB 1 High Road Construction Careers
    In June, the California Workforce Development Board (CWDB) awarded $462,506 to Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo counties, with Ventura WDB as the lead support of the SB1 High Road Construction Careers initiative. The initiative's purpose is to advance careers in the building and construction trades as a reliable career pathway for disadvantaged Californians.
    “With the loss of jobs in retail and other sectors, the High Road Construction Careers initiative is a unique opportunity for workers in Ventura County to enter specialized training programs to build and strengthen skills and learn about a variety of good paying jobs within the construction industry," says Evans "This program is open for everyone and we are specifically charged with reaching out to women, veterans, individuals who have been involved with the justice system and others who need supportive opportunities to move into successful careers.”
    WDB coordinates its response to COVID 19 with the Economic Development Collaborative (EDC), local business organizations, counties, cities, and chambers. For up-to-date business recovery and closure/opening information, go to the EDC website:  https://edcollaborative.com/covid19. For more on the Workforce Development Board of Ventura County, go to http://workforceventuracounty.org.
    About the Workforce Development Board
    The Workforce Development Board of Ventura County administers federal funds that help to support America's Job Center of California locations and other free job seeker, youth, and employer programs and services in Ventura County. The Workforce Development Board of Ventura County is a proud partner of America’s Job Center of California network. Equal opportunity employer/program. Auxiliary aids and services are available upon request to individuals with disabilities. If you have limitations hearing or speaking dial 711 to reach the California Relay Service (CRS). For more information, call 805-477-5306 or visit http://workforceventuracounty.org.

    Rebecca Evans, Executive Director
    rebecca.evans@ventura.org, (805) 477-5306