NARCOG Awarded $254,000 Grant
The North Central Alabama Regional Council of Governments (NARCOG) announced today that it was awarded a grant of $254,130 from Senior Service America, Inc (SSAI). Almost 90 percent of this grant – originally from the U.S. Department of Labor – will provide temporary employment to at least 50 low-income older adults living in Cullman, Lawrence, and Morgan Counties. These older adults will participate in the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) a cornerstone program of the Older Americans Act.
SCSEP, the only federal job training program targeted exclusively to low income seniors, promotes personal dignity and self-sufficiency through work. Its temporary part-time community service jobs provide a hand-up, not a hand-out for older, unemployed low-income Americans. The program allows eligible individuals to gain experience and training to assist them in achieving permanent employment. Participants average 18 months in the program but can participate for up to four years.
As the second largest U.S. Department of Labor National Grantee of SCSEP, SSAI operates in thirteen (13) states. “Our long-term, local partners are a key to the strength of SSAI and provide the systems to train older Americans into strategic advantage for employers and the country.” said Gary A. Officer, SSAI President & CEO. “We are very pleased to continue our support of the North Central Alabama Regional Council of Governments for the 42nd consecutive year.”
“This program is a huge benefit for older adults and the entire region. First, SCSEP participants are helping more than 30 local community and public agencies carry out their mission, including the American Red Cross, Morgan County Archives, North Alabama Agriplex and United Way. Second, older workers are remaining active, vital members of the community. The grant through SSAI is vital to our being able to deliver this program in our community,” said Jeffrey Pruitt, Executive Director of NARCOG.
What is even more important is the program provides a pathway to self-sufficiency through the dignity of work for low income individuals age 55 and over who sometimes experience tough employment challenges. NARCOG is currently accepting applications for the program. Individuals may download an application on the NARCOG website or call 256-355-4515 to request additional information. SCSEP is just one of many programs for older adults, caregivers and disabled of all ages from Cullman, Lawrence, and Morgan Counties.