Enabling women to obtain employment in the metalworking and manufacturing sectors


United States of America

Thematic area

Education and training


Since 2017


The context

In both Chicago and Baltimore City, women make up a disproportionate number of people living in poverty. The disparity is even greater for single mothers. One in three single female-led households in both Chicago and Baltimore City live below the poverty line.


The project

JARC’s Women in Manufacturing Program (WMP) simultaneously addresses poverty and unemployment in Chicago and Baltimore. JARC does this by tackling the skills gaps in the traditionally male-dominated metal fabricating and manufacturing sectors, by offering comprehensive manufacturing training and job placement services for women. Each WMP trainee can access the Emergency Fund and family support services to mitigate short-term emergencies that may interfere with completing training and advancing in their careers.


The support

Fondation CHANEL is supporting JARC to expand its Women in Manufacturing Program, by reinforcing its financial literacy, family support and emergency fund services. The Foundation is also supporting JARC to draw upon its extensive knowledge of, and data about, women in manufacturing. This will be used to evaluate its impact and share knowledge on best practices for training women in non-traditional fields with other organizations and professional associations.

The expected results

  • JARC will enroll 110 women into its Women in Manufacturing Programs at four sites.
  • 88 women will earn industry credentials from nationally- recognized credentialing organizations.
  • 80 women will be placed into full-time employment (with benefits) in manufacturing during the project period.
  • During their training program, women will receive at least 35 financial education classes.
  • JARC will conduct a needs assessment, evaluation of its impact on women, and create and disseminate a white paper on best practices for training women in nontraditional fields.


The partner

Jane Addams Resource Corporation helps low-income workers and community residents attain financial self-sufficiency through a combination of high quality skills training and bundled financial capability support services.  JARC’s Women in Manufacturing Program seeks to break down gender barriers and place more women in “nontraditional,” high-wage trades like welding, computer numerical control (CNC), and press brake.

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