Horizons Workforce Development Program is the only one of its kind at BRC. In the more than 20 years that Horizons has been in operation, the program has helped thousands of men and women move from unemployment and homelessness to independence and self-sufficiency.
Our approach ensures that participants not only exit the shelter system, but maintain housing independence and economic self-sufficiency in the long-term.
"Horizons provides a place for second and even third chances." - Tanya, Program Director at Horizons
Specific services include career counseling, job readiness training, job search assistance, referrals to education and training programs, and on-the-job training through an agency-wide internship program. A special six-week Food Service Training program assists trainees to obtain their NYC Food Handlers Certificate. Horizons also provides support groups, workshops, and individual counseling for graduates to assist in sustaining their accomplishments. Many graduates of the Horizons program have continued as employees at BRC, or return as alumni to support those in the program. As a privately-funded program, $2,500 funds a full scholarship for a client to use Horizons’ services.
"We don't give people jobs, we help people identify the uniquely personal reasons why they want to work. We prepare fathers, mothers and young people for the rigors of work and give them tools to run the very long race of independence. These are some of the things that make a better city for us all." - Tanya, Program Director at Horizons
While Horizons recognizes the importance of obtaining a job, the key measure of the program’s success, and that of our clients, is the ability for individuals to remain in the workforce, building toward lasting self-sufficiency. Horizons’ performance outpaces retention outcomes of similar workforce development programs throughout the country. Data from the Benchmarking Project, a multi-year, nationwide workforce development initiative supported by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, demonstrates that Horizons’ outcomes are well above the average three, six and twelve-month retention rates (75%, 55% and 34% respectively) of other workforce development programs that primarily serve homeless individuals.
These achievements are all the more remarkable considering the significant needs of the clients we serve – many of whom come to the program with little or no work history – and demonstrate the effectiveness of our staff in coaching clients beyond maintenance and survival and toward material advancement and independence.
"Horizons team wants you to know that they sincerely believe they can partner with clients and be the agents of change in their lives, even if we don't see it immediately the seed has been planted. After all, what is more exciting than waiting and watching for something new to bloom!" - Tanya, Program Director at Horizons