In the Americas, we have taken a dual-pronged approach to activating access to employment
First, we are working with a handful of high-performing partners that have proven results and the deepest immediate impact; second, we are also convening a cohort of partners who are at the forefront of innovation and disruptive new solutions to some of the toughest issues addressing society.
We have thoughtfully curated a portfolio of partners that enables us to amplify the impact of our investment dollars and leverage the full capability of our business to drive real change and meaningfully engage key stakeholders across key sectors at both a local and national levels.
We have prioritized demand-led models of employability training, which combine highly focused vocational training with meaningful job placements in areas of the most urgent employer demand.
Innovative and disruptive solutions
We are working with a small number of the very smartest partners who are looking towards the future of employability solutions and testing entrepreneurial models that have the potential to deliver more sustainable and scalable impact.
We have partnered with Per Scholas, a high-impact IT training program with >80% job placement rates, to support the launch of their new site in Brooklyn, NY while co-designing a new cybersecurity training curriculum and internship program at Barclays. The Brooklyn site will help Per Scholas meet the already extensive demand from local employers for talent in the fastest growing sub-sectors of technology while also providing a pipeline of diverse talent to Barclays.
Per Scholas was founded in the South Bronx in New York City to provide technology education, training and career opportunities for people living 200% below the federal poverty level, who are un- and underemployed. The non-profit has served more than 4,600 New Yorkers since the launch of its first IT training program in 1998. In 2016, Per Scholas trained nearly 450 adults in New York City; on average, more than 85% of these people will graduate, and more than 90% of these will have one or more recognized IT certificate (such as the CompTIA A+ qualification).
Since 1998 Per Scholas has placed more than 3,500 of their graduates into jobs, this is more than 80% employment rate, and earning starting wages that are four times their average pre-training incomes.
Good Shepherd Services
In 2014 Barclays launched a three year partnership with Good Shepherd Services to create the Rebound programme based in Brooklyn, New York.
Rebound uses basketball as the impetus to deliver financial literacy skills, employment workshops, one-on-one mentoring, and personal development plans to 17-24 year olds. The programme operates in two hubs in East New York and Red Hook, communities where one in four young people are out of school or work. Over 125 young people have participated in the Rebound programme to date, 76% have received financial skills training, and 88% have participated in life skills training. Nine out of 10 have achieved employment or accessed education as a result of their participation in the programme.
In 2016, Acumen America, a global non-profit venture fund, launched a portfolio of American social enterprises focused on tackling poverty within the United States. As part of this, Barclays is the anchor partner of Acumen America’s Workforce Development fund focused on investing in companies that provide low-income Americans with the training and tools they need to qualify for and attain jobs and succeed in building lifelong careers.
Acumen America invests in companies providing low-income students and job-seekers the training and tools that they need to succeed in building lifelong careers.
In Wilmington, Delaware and Las Vegas, Nevada, we have partnered with Tech Impact, helping the non-profit to fulfill their mission of empowering communities and nonprofits to use technology to better serve our world.
Tech Impact was founded in 2002, and has provided sustainable and affordable IT services, support, and training to hundreds of nonprofits nationwide. Since 2010, Tech Impact's technology workforce development programs have brought tremendous benefits to young adults in the communities they serve.
Together with Tech Impact, we are preparing over 120 young adults and veterans for the workforce each year through technical training and professional skills development. The objective of Tech Impact’s workforce development strategy is to address underemployment and unemployment in young adults in low- to-moderate-income communities by providing accessible, high quality training to low-skilled, underrepresented individuals. In addition to the training, mentorships and job placement assistance is also provided.
Tech Impact offers two workforce development programs, ITWorks and CXWorks. ITWorks is a technology training programme that serves over 100 individuals annually. On average, 90% of enrolled students graduate, 100% complete an IT internship and earn at least one IT certification and 70% of the graduates secure IT jobs or full-time, non-IT jobs or pursue post-secondary education.
CXWorks was launched in Las Vegas in September 2016, as part of a three year partnership with Barclays and will serve up to 45 individuals annually. This customer experience training programme offers intensive customer service and computer skills training for young adults and veterans. Graduates are able to secure and retain jobs in a call centre environment.