The Hope Program is pushing to help job seekers stay prepared and employed during the coronavirus pandemic.
“We have an expression, we say, ‘When you’re Hope, you’re Hope for life,” said Hope graduate Alejandrina Sanchez. She says the program helped her get employed, but that when her job was put on pause because of the pandemic, she says one big family came to the rescue.
“Now I am just with Bright Power through the Hope Program, and I’m working right now with them as a flagger,” said Sanchez.
She is now working in the South Bronx and says the program continues to give her hope during economically challenging times, so she can put food on the table for her kids.
“It’s more than just hope, it’s a family, it’s a family,” said Sanchez.
For the first time in 35 years, the workforce development nonprofit was forced to move its job training classes online because of the pandemic. Normally, classes are taught in person in Downtown Brooklyn and Hunts Point in the Bronx.
“Workforce development training is more important than ever because you need a basic skill-set no matter what the future holds,” said Jennifer Mitchell, Executive Director of the Hope Program.
She says the program works closely with South Bronx Councilman Rafael Salamanca to secure funding so these classes remain free for those who need help.
“While we’re at home and the City of New York is paused, and individuals may be thinking about different career changes, hope has different career paths in which they can take advantage now,” said Salamanca.
A high school diploma is not necessary.