In 1993, a City Health Department Social Worker, Joseph T. Jones, Jr.–now CEO, Center for Urban Families–established what is today The Baltimore Responsible Fatherhood Project, and since then, has been the driving force behind many ground-breaking programs for underserved Baltimoreans.
Ernestine Chambers, KRA Operations Manager, TANF Work Participation, Placement, and Support Services Program–operated for the Baltimore City Department of Social Services–reported, “KRA/Baltimore’s partnership with CFUF has impacted our customers tremendously through STRIVE Baltimore, a training and job-placement program for hard-to-employ jobseekers.”
STRIVE acceptance is extremely competitive, and completion very challenging. Many participants do not make it to graduation. But for those who do– like Theresa Murray– a self-sufficient future is all but guaranteed. Her STRIVE graduation led directly to acceptance in a Johns Hopkins training program in Hospital Housekeeping.
Career Agent, Ms. Tzadda Carpenter, commented, “Theresa has said that KRA/Baltimore and STRIVE have totally changed her life. When she completes her Hopkins training, she will have a permanent job there, no longer dependent on TANF benefits!”[Through its Labor Research and Consulting Services practice, KRA conducted a process evaluation of the first STRIVE ( Support and Training Results In Valuable Employment) grants, to identify predictors of successful implementation, and to assess the feasibility of replication in other workforce development programs for disadvantaged individuals. Today, STRIVE continues to thrive in 25 communities–from Baltimore, Maryland to Beer-Sheva, Israel.]