Local Nonprofit Awarded $542K to expand Job Opportunities for Women in Apprenticeships, Nontraditional Occupations


The U.S. Department of Labor announced the award of $3.4 million in funding to help recruit, train and retain more women in quality pre-apprenticeship and Registered Apprenticeship programs, as well as nontraditional occupations. Fresh Start Women’s Foundation was awarded $542, 358 in funding.

Administered by the department’s Women’s Bureau and Employment and Training Administration, the Women in Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Occupations grants will support organizations in Arizona, Illinois, New York, Virginia and Washington.

Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh explained the WANTO grant program’s importance at an event at the Chicago Women in Trades center. “As part of our effort to build an economy that works for everyone, the department has applied a worker-centered approach to address barriers for women entering apprenticeship programs and non-traditional occupations,” said Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh.

“The Women in Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Occupations grants will increase workforce pathways for women entering the building trades at a crucial time, as the Biden-Harris administration is heavily investing in infrastructure to create jobs in the clean energy, technology and manufacturing sectors,” Walsh added. “They create a more inclusive and equitable workforce while empowering women to get the training and support they need to secure good paying, middle-class union jobs.”

WANTO grants support women’s participation in fields in which they have traditionally been underrepresented, such as finance, technology, construction, manufacturing, energy and transportation. A portion of the grants will provide support services such as childcare, transportation, tuition and work-related gear.

The 2022 WANTO grant recipients are as follows:

Recipient City State Amount
Fresh Start Women’s Foundation Phoenix AZ $542,358
Chicago Women in Trades Chicago IL $713,785
Nontraditional Employment for Women New York NY $714,619
Hampton Roads Workforce Council Norfolk VA $714,619
Apprenticeship and Nontraditional Employment for Women Tukwila WA $714,619

For more information about the program and grant recipients, see the department’s WANTO page.

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