Temple University receives $2.6M grant to help neighbors

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Temple University has received a $2.6 million grant to help residents in the surrounding neighborhood get good jobs.

After receiving the grant over the summer, Temple University's Lenfest North Philadelphia Workforce Initiative is funding 16 organizations that work closely with the surrounding community on issues of employment and seeking better pay.

"The whole point is to help North Philadelphia and the area surrounding Temple University, to provide them with opportunities so that they can get into training programs to find employment," Shirley Moy of the Lenfest North Philadelphia Workforce Initiative said.

"We are always overjoyed when resources are available; they are hard to come by," Rev. Luis Cortes, Founder, President & CEO of Esperanza, said.

Esperanza is one of the organizations that will receive additional funding. It's a well-known organization that has assisted the Hispanic community for more than three decades.

"It's our hope that through this collaborative partnership of different agencies we will be better able to address the needs of Hispanic North Philadelphia and the Hunting Park community which is also African American," Cortes said.

Several of the nonprofits also receiving funding take a holistic approach to unemployment.

They focus on mental health, literacy, language barriers and other obstacles. This grant will help them expand those programs.

"It's this understanding that people need not a hand out but a hand up. Not everybody is born in wealth, not everybody has a stable family," Moy said.

A number of organizations say that with this grant their projects will be kicking off right away.
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