Work Options for Women's Winter 2019 Update
WOW targets very hard-to-employ individuals who face multiple and substantial obstacles to employment. In 2018, 195 students enrolled in our culinary skills training program. The students WOW served last year faced some of the most significant barriers to employment that WOW has seen in the last 10 years — nearly 72% were homelessness at the time they entered training, 74% had a previous criminal history, and 50% had a prior felony conviction. In addition, 18% had less than a high school education; 65% reported they had experienced domestic violence and 52% had custody of children under age 18. Sixty-eight percent of the students served in 2018 were women.
In May 2018 WOW launched the Mobile Culinary Classroom (MCC) with grant funds from Impact100 Metro Denver. The MCC uses a concentrated 4-week version of our core programing to train ex-offenders preparing for re-entry. In the first 8 months of operations, 34 MCC students completed training and 76% of graduates are currently employed. With the addition of MCC programing, WOW increased the number of employed students by 60% over last year.