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Salvation Army TASC receives First Niagara grant

by jmaloni

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Tue, Mar 18th 2014 01:45 pm

First Niagara Foundation supports employment services program

The Salvation Army is the grateful beneficiary of a $7,500 grant awarded by the First Niagara Foundation. This grant will cover the expense of an instructor for the New York State Test Assessing Secondary Completion, formerly GED program.

These funds will provide an additional 300 hours of classroom time, which allows The Salvation Army to immediately extend the class by an additional two hours each day. This time extension allows the TASC instructor to work longer with those students who are in the final preparations to take the exam, with the intent to make the client test ready and test confident. Organizers said it is critical for the instructor to explain the lessons thoroughly and give students more time to practice their reading, writing and math skills. These extra hours have a direct and measurable impact on the client's success.

The Salvation Army expects the First Niagara Foundation's grant to immediately impact the number of students who are prepared to register for the TASC test. Also, more pre-tests will be given, which will provide better data on the efficiency of the program, affecting the number of students who successfully obtain their high school equivalency diploma, resulting in employment and increased life control. This movement from welfare dependency to economic self-sufficiency is the ultimate goal of The Salvation Army's employment services program.

"At First Niagara, we believe everyone should have the opportunity to learn, grow and achieve their dreams," said Elizabeth Gurney, executive director of the First Niagara Foundation. "We are proud to support The Salvation Army's employment services program as they work to help hundreds of underserved individuals in our community seek and find gainful employment opportunities."

The employment services program provides job readiness training, job placement and support services such as life skills, personal financial literacy and the confidence and self-discipline to secure employment and be successful on the job.

"Without a high school diploma, individuals find themselves at a great disadvantage in today's job market," said Christina Schweitzer, The Salvation Army director of employment services. "The Salvation Army is committed to this program and we are grateful to the partnership of the First Niagara Foundation. We have witnessed the increase of an individual's employment potential as a direct result of additional instruction."

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