The Northern Illinois chapter of the Associated Builders and Contractors recently conducted a craft training course for at-risk individuals in Chicago’s South Side neighborhood.
During the chapter’s five-week training course, participants took part in painter training, which included completing the Contrens learning coursework series and getting hands-on jobsite experience at three rehabilitation projects. An instructor certified by the National Center for Construction Education and Research taught the class. All the participants who completed the course were interviewed by contractors and offered jobs.
“This was just a great opportunity to give back to the community,” said Don Glays, president of the Northern Illinois ABC chapter. “For many of these men, the program has really given them a second chance. For the community, it means there are 20 new craft professionals in the neighborhood with good jobs and good wages.”
Because of the success of the course, Cook County officials have asked the ABC chapter to expand its program to other construction trades. The group plans to train more than 125 participants in disadvantaged and at-risk neighborhoods over the next four years.