LA2050 Grants Challenge applications are open now through June 28th, 2024.
2023 Grants Challenge

Workforce Development Program for Victims and Survivors of Domestic Violence

Jenesse strives to give survivors of domestic violence the skills, tools, and support they need to achieve self-sufficiency, transforming their lives through vocational training, entrepreneurship, and employment opportunities. Jenesse assists clients with all aspects of the employment process from resume development and interview readiness to workplace skills.


What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?

Income Inequality

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

South LA

South Bay

Other:: Mid-City

Wilshire Areas

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Expand existing project, program, or initiative

What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?

Economic equity is defined here as to how income and opportunities are distributed. For generations, Black residents have been cut off from social equity and economic equality by systemic racism and persistent societal failures of massive proportions. As a result, Black people earn less money than their white counterparts earn, inherit less wealth, and have access to a fraction of the assets and opportunities. This is true from health to education that commonly lead to white-collar careers that pay dividends beyond higher wages. In addition, a lack of employment and employable skills exacerbates the cycle of domestic violence (DV) by limiting viable options for self-sufficiency. Without a viable means of supporting themselves and their family, poor women of color who suffer from DV are at higher risk of remaining in violent households simply because they have nowhere else to go.

Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.

Jenesse's Workforce Development Program's mission is to give survivors of domestic violence the skills, tools, and support they need to achieve self-sufficiency and transform their lives. Our six-week hybrid Paid Work Experience Program is a new component of this program through which we assist clients: 1. who are struggling with unemployment due to COVID-19 and cannot access any other source of income or 2. who have no work experience and no GED or High School Diploma. We meet weekly in person and also via Zoom on the pads we provide the clients. The clients develop a professional portfolio at program completion and receive a $1200 stipend. There also will be a final writing piece on how clients plan to use what they learned from this program. Clients will develop ready-to-work attitudes/interview skills; financial literacy; knowledge of workplace safety and rights as workers; business operations; how to read an earnings statement and know what payroll deductions to expect; career decision-making; and make a career goal plan and much more. This program contains an integrated educational process that: (1) helps clients to choose a career path based on their interests and aptitudes; (2) prepares them for academic enrichment and career success; and (3) allows clients to learn to work with others in ways that are successful and rewarding. Jenesse also connects with our partners and business leaders to provide mentorship, resources, and job placement at program completion.

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

Empowering and educating domestic violence survivors on how to live a life free of violence not only impacts those victims and their loved ones but can have profound and positive reverberations on how communities and economies operate. Achieving economic equality for survivors leaves them less vulnerable to violence from an intimate partner, and financial stability improves their lives and their family. This, in turn, provides a significant overall economic boost for the community as a whole. The participants of this program will become productive members of the community who can create new opportunities for other members to develop new skills and secure meaningful jobs. Therefore, this program is a powerful tool for Jenesse in its fight against the economic inequality in Los Angeles County and to create a healthy just community for everyone.

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

Jenesse utilizes a variety of methods to ensure its programs meet performance targets and measures. Jenesse's Director of Compliance is responsible for ensuring that the agency's programmatic and operational activities are monitored on a regular basis. The outcomes of the program achieved in previous years show that the program is working, including: 90% report greater self-esteem and enhanced confidence in their ability in supporting themselves and their family; 80% report increased economic equity as evidenced by higher income, access to opportunities, and increased self-sufficiency; 70% of clients completing the program successfully obtain employment, initiate vocational/educational programs, or launch their own businesses; 50% of the clients start their own businesses, maintain business operations for a minimum of one year.

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 20

Indirect Impact: 100