(Rock Springs, WY – November 12, 2015) CLIMB Wyoming, a nonprofit organization that trains and places single mothers in careers that successfully support their families, is thrilled to announce that Brittany Wells Gray will return as the Program Director for the CLIMB Wyoming Sweetwater Area program.
In July 2015, CLIMB Wyoming announced that in collaboration with local government officials and private funders they would re-open the CLIMB program in Rock Springs. The Sweetwater Area CLIMB program closed in late 2014 due to a significant, unexpected decrease in federal funding.
“In addition to the incredible support we have received from the community, CLIMB has worked tirelessly and quickly to expand and diversify our funding sources to increase our sustainability. Most recently, CLIMB has been awarded access to state of Wyoming matching funds. As private and corporate donations are received, CLIMB is honored to be able to secure these matching dollars and double the impact of gift,” said Dr. Ray Fleming Dinneen, CLIMB Wyoming founder and executive director.
Wells Gray joins CLIMB Wyoming after working with the Sweetwater County Child Developmental Center, and has a decade of communications experience in publishing, broadcasting and politics.
“I am honored to return to the role of the Sweetwater Area program director,” said Wells Gray. “With newly diversified funding, and committed community partners, I step back into this role with confidence in our longevity and excitement about making a significant impact in the lives of the single mothers and children that CLIMB serves.”
The impact of the CLIMB program in Rock Springs has been significant, serving over 100 single mothers and 250 of their children since inception in 2007. Average monthly wages for CLIMB graduates in Sweetwater County increased from $1,117 to $3,101 and 90% of Sweetwater CLIMB graduates are still employed two years after completing the program. The Sweetwater program has also been instrumental in allowing CLIMB to develop non-traditional training solutions to meet Wyoming workforce needs.
The innovative and nationally recognized CLIMB program, which creates systemic change for single mother families in poverty by transitioning them to financial self-sufficiency through career training, serves participants in 11 counties across the state through sites in Casper, Cheyenne, Gillette, Laramie, Sweetwater Area and Teton Area. CLIMB’s outcomes establish it as one of the most successful poverty reduction programs both in Wyoming and nationwide, with an 89% graduation rate and 74% of participants successfully employed two years after program completion. The average monthly wage for CLIMB participants typically doubles, increasing from $1,038 to $2,492 two years post-program. CLIMB graduates also consistently decrease their use of public support programs, on average decreasing use of food stamps from 52% to 32% and decreasing use of public healthcare from 32% to 13%.
The Sweetwater Area CLIMB program was established in 2007 and serves an average of 20 participants per year, in trainings that include Warehouse Technicians, Inventory Technicians, Certified Nursing Assistants and CDL-certified drivers.
CLIMB Wyoming plans to launch the first of two annual programs in Spring 2016.