jobs programs training unemployed
A FutureStitch worker holds up socks produced by the manufacturer, which sought out the San Diego Workforce Partnership to hire underrepresented workers. Photo credit:

The San Diego Workforce Partnership aided local employers in connecting more than 1,800 local residents to jobs that offered living wages averaging $22.79 an hour.

More than 11,000 people were served by the organization in 2022, including 9,444 job seekers who received training or placement in internships or career opportunities.

The totals were part of the Kearny Mesa organization’s annual report, which outlined services, programs and educational opportunities offered by the Workforce Partnership.

The organization, which joins forces with legislators, local employers and nonprofits to help job seekers, especially those who come from systemically marginalized communities, also noted that in the past year:

  • 62% of program participants self-identified as Black, Indigenous, or a person of color
  • 47% of job seekers served were women
  • 15% of job seekers had no high school diploma or equivalent, and
  • 342 credentials, certifications and diplomas were awarded.

“This year, our partners and staff have done critical work to make sure every San Diegan has access to training and education,” said Shannon Moran, COO and acting CEO. “By doing so, we’re setting them up for long-term success by providing the tools and skills necessary to enter high-growth, high-demand industries.”

The group cited a company that benefitted from its services, along with a worker.

A sustainable sock manufacturer, FutureStitch, wanted to invest in disadvantaged populations at his new facility in Oceanside. Using On-the-Job Training funds secured through the Workforce Partnership’s business services, Future Stitch was able to hire and train more than 15 women whose lives had been touched by the justice system.

The federal OJT program helps offset the cost of hiring and training employees by reimbursing employers up to 50% of a trainee’s hourly wage for a maximum of 1,040 hours.

The worker, Anaisa Flores, who has a learning disability and a history of substance use, took part in the Substance Use Disorder Counselor Training program.

She received one-on-one support from a program specialist and had her education and credential expenses covered as she studied to become a certified counselor. In less than a year, she was promoted from a peer support specialist to substance use disorder counselor, allowing her to help others in similar situations.

“When I think about work, I think about excitement,” Flores said. “I want people to know it’s possible to better yourself.”