Major workforce initiative to create employment opportunities fo - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Major workforce initiative to create employment opportunities for youth

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

Men Who Care Global formed two years ago as a response to violence in uptown. They hit the streets in orange shirts, working one-on-one with young people during big events.

The organization's founder Ron Leeper says a common theme started to appear among many youth – trouble finding jobs. During the first month of operation, Leeper told WBTV "We want to expose [youth] to people who can provide job training for them so they can gainfully employed if that's a need."

At a press conference Monday,  Leeper told the media that more than two dozen businesses and organizations stepped forward to fill the need.

"We'll develop sort of a pipeline if you will..young people that come to us and don't have any skills sets..we will send them to the Urban League or Goodwill..when they come out the other end with some training..we will work to place with them potential employer," Leeper said.

Urban League president Patrick Graham out his group invested $650,000 into workforce programs last year.

He says graduates of those programs earned $7.49 million in salaries. "We have partners that also have similar stories."

And those stories, Graham says, make for happier endings.

"It helps families stay together..it helps men provide for their families. It helps communities grow," Graham said.

Leeper says collaborations between his group and area buisnesses have already begun.

Men Who Care will also assign a mentor to each young person to help keep them on the right track.

Members also say a few jobs won't fix everything but call on other organizations and businesses to step forward to do what they can.

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