YouthBuild receives grant to provide weatherization training
Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO) Director Warren Ribley announced Jan. 10 $3,398,444 in capital funding to train nearly 700 weatherization specialists across the state as part of the second phase of the Urban Weatherization Initiative (UWI).
UWI is the nation’s first state-funded weatherization program and one of the largest job creation initiatives to date for urban communities in Illinois.
The Illinois YouthBuild Coalition, Inc., will be receiving $400,000 in grant funding that will be used to provide weatherization specialist training for 84 participants.
The training will be conducted at Comprehensive Community Solutions, Inc., in Rockford, as well as three other coalition member locations in Normal, North Chicago and Waukegan, Ill.
Trainees will be provided with skills they need to become weatherization specialists, and will receive two nationally-recognized certifications. Graduates will be provided assistance with job placement and/or further education upon completion of the 16-week training.
Kerry Knodle, president of the Illinois YouthBuild Coalition, said: “Our network of YouthBuild organizations in Illinois is proud to be at the forefront of this important green job training initiative. In addition to providing state-of-the-art skills training, this initiative will benefit each of these communities in the improvement of energy efficiency and lowering utility costs for residents.”
The Urban Weatherization Initiative (UWI) is funded through the Illinois Jobs Now! capital program. The UWI was initially proposed by the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus, and currently, $12 million in capital funding has been allotted to UWI to start and fund the program.
Ribley said: “Through weatherization, homeowners are able to increase energy efficiency while reducing their energy costs. The Urban Weatherization Initiative will help revitalize communities and create much-needed jobs in our most disadvantaged neighborhoods.”
For more about the program or to apply for the Rockford training program, contact William Howard at Comprehensive Community Solutions, Inc., at (815) 963-6236.
Comprehensive Community Solutions, Inc./YouthBuild Rockford is at 917 S. Main St., Rockford. Visit www.youthbuildillinois.org for more details.
From the Jan. 25-31, 2012, issue
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