Duke Energy provides grant to DESA’s nonprofit organization, Joseph Outreach
Diane Sumpter, Founder, DESA Inc.
Joseph Outreach, the nonprofit arm of DESA, Inc., has received a grant from The Duke Energy Foundation to benefit returning citizens in South Carolina. The grant is one of 10 awarded to South Carolina organizations focused on building and enhancing strategic engineering initiatives that will help grow the energy industry’s workforce of tomorrow.
Joseph Outreach received $25,000 for its Energy Industry Second Chance Pilot Program, which will be utilized by REEMERGE, a reintegration program (operated by DESA) committed to helping formerly incarcerated citizens manage the complex process of reentering society.
The Energy Industry Second Chance Pilot Program will provide workforce training for returning citizens. Participants will receive training in vegetation management with opportunities for immediate employment and career advancement within the energy sector. Joseph Outreach will provide transitional housing, transportation to worksites, and other essential reentry services.
“This is a tremendous opportunity for returning citizens,” Dwight James, REEMERGE Project Manager, says. “This gives them valuable resources to successfully transition back into society, as well as training and a job that pays a living wage.”
“We have a long history of targeting investments to have the greatest impact for our communities,” said Mike Callahan, South Carolina state president for Duke Energy. “Part of that tradition has been a focus on helping to build a diverse workforce for the Palmetto State. These grants build on that by helping expand access to training opportunities for our nation’s military veterans as well as minority and underserved communities. It is critical to continue that tradition and help strengthen the workforce pipeline needed to fuel the state’s economic engine now and in the years to come.”
These grants are part of Duke Energy’s ongoing commitment to workforce development, which totals $1.6 million over the past five years. As South Carolina continues its clean energy transformation, the Duke Energy Foundation is investing in programs that will build the next generation workforce as well as create access to training and job skills that fit current community needs.