Community-led groups and nonprofits can now apply for Port of Seattle funding to increase economic opportunities in cities that surround Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), the Port announced this week.

A total of $2.5 million is available with the launch of the fourth cycle of the South King County Community Impact Fund (SKCCIF) Economic Recovery Program.

Organizations can apply for up to $100,000 for a single year of funding and $250,000 in multiyear funding.

The application period is open now through July 21, 2023.

The Port also announced today six organizations that will receive $1.3 million in funding through the third cycle of the SKCCIF Economic Recovery Program. The Economic Recovery Program connects South King County communities with the greatest need to opportunities for well-paying jobs and training, recruiting the next generation of professionals in port-related industries, including aviation, maritime, construction trades, and green career industries.

“So many families continue to face economic uncertainty and hardship — they’re still finding their footing from Covid-19,” said Port of Seattle Commission Vice President Toshiko Grace Hasegawa. “This Economic Recovery Program ensures that economic development opportunities reach into diverse communities and creates pipelines to careers at the Port.”

“Through equitable partnerships, the Port is creating economic opportunities for communities that have been systemically excluded from opportunities,” said Port of Seattle Commissioner Hamdi Mohamed. “The South King County Community Impact Fund Economic Recovery Program makes quality, family-wage jobs more accessible in these communities and grows a pipeline of workers into port-related industries.”

Connections to port-related industries

With ties to all of Washington’s key economic sectors and connections to more than 500 employers operating at its facilities, the Port is uniquely positioned to help create a pipeline to well-paying jobs that benefit communities most impacted by Port operations. Workforce development investments take on particular importance now as so many port-related industries continue to experience staffing shortfalls. Community-led projects help participants acquire the skills, experience, and education they need to secure increasingly complex and family-wage jobs at the Port and in port-related industries.

Cycles 1 and 2 recipient Businesses Ending Slavery and Trafficking (BEST) serves human trafficking survivors and at-risk youth living in South King County. The organization supports economic opportunity by delivering employment readiness training, supporting employers in port-related industries, and creating paid internships and job opportunities for human trafficking survivors and at-risk youth at the airport and in port-related industries.

“When human trafficking survivors first leave their trafficker, safety needs to be the top priority. But after they’ve been connected with emergency housing and their basic needs are met, survivors need jobs to help them rebuild their life,” explained Hannah Farkas, Director of Programs for BEST. “The Port of Seattle South King County Community Impact Fund significantly strengthens our ability to provide employment opportunities for human trafficking survivors in port-related industries.”

Cycle 2 recipient Latino Civic Alliance said Port funding has helped the organization provide outreach to Latinos who have not previously had access to workforce development and pre-apprenticeship programs.

“Port funding has allowed us to collectively work with young adults and their families to learn about the knowledge, value, and benefits of livable wages and apprenticeship programs and how they transform families from poverty,” said Marie Bravo, Resource Development and Administrative Director of Latino Civic Alliance.

Cycle 3 recipients

To date, 21 South King County organizations have received funding through the first, second, and third cycles of the SKCCIF Economic Recovery Program.

Veronique Facchinelli, Community Program Director of Cycle 3 recipient Casa Latina, said the funding will allow the organization to offer training and services to increase economic opportunity for the communities they support.

“We hope that this funding will enable more members of the Latinx immigrant community to access the great jobs with living wages and career paths from the port-related industries (construction trades, green jobs and more),” Facchinelli said. “Thanks to this funding, Casa Latina will be able to connect the Latinx community with appropriate trainings and referrals, and help them navigate the various pathways towards pre- and trade apprenticeship programs. This will enable the community to gain adequate skills to apply for the port-related jobs.”

Learn more about the groups receiving funding through the Economic Recovery Program’s third cycle and their projects:

African Chamber of Commerce of the Pacific Northwest (ACCPNW)

ACCPNW’s African Drayage Trucking Business Support Project (ADT-BUS) will provide business technical support to drivers to help their trucking businesses survive and grow. Education on small business management will ensure trucking business entrepreneurs serving Port facilities can successfully run their own businesses.

BIPOC Apostrophe

BIPOC Apostrophe trains youth from 18 to 25 years old in the areas of aircraft cargo management, logistics centers and warehouse activities, and aircraft marshalling.

Boys and Girls Clubs of King County

Boys and Girls Clubs of King County’s YouthForce program, in partnership with 7GEN and SIXR, will connect economically vulnerable opportunity youth from near-airport communities to pre-apprenticeship and apprenticeship training pathways in green technology and advanced manufacturing. 

Casa Latina

Casa Latina’s construction program builds on experience recruiting, training, and ensuring Latino workers have the skills and training needed to obtain jobs in the construction industry. This program includes case management and wraparound services to support men, women, and young adults.

Serve Ethiopians

Serve Ethiopians’ New Start program provides outreach and recruitment for immigrant BIPOC ride share and taxicab drivers to pursue a career as an Aircraft Mechanic at SEA Airport and participate in the “Introduction to Aviation Maintenance Technology (AMT)” course offered by Airport University.

Your Money Matters Mentoring

Participants will acquire construction skills, competencies, experience, and education to secure jobs in the construction industry. The nonprofit Your Money Matters provides education and mentoring support through the introduction to construction training program. Participants will obtain certification in Abatement and Demolition.

The Port continues to offer multiyear awards to applicants for projects ranging from $100,000 for one year to up to $250,000 for multiyear funding. Multiyear funding allows organizations to invest in long-term planning and implementation and increase the impact of the Port’s community investments.

Twelve organizations are continuing work on economic recovery projects through the multiyear funding option. Learn more on the South King County Community Impact Fund Economic Recovery Program page

Cycle 4 application process

Have a project with outcomes related to workforce development, job creation, or economic development in port-related industries? Apply for Economic Recovery Program funding.

To apply for funding, complete the Eligibility Determination by July 21, 2023. Visit the South King County Community Impact Fund Economic Recovery Program page for more information on the application process, proposal materials, and previously awarded projects. 

Key details

  • Organizations may apply for both single and multiyear funding options.
  • The Fund invites proposals for projects related to workforce development, job creation programs, or economic recovery solutions in Port-related industries.
  • Projects must benefit South King County.Projects must serve those who are economically vulnerable, including people of color, Native people, immigrants and refugees, English Language Learners, veterans, seniors, youth, and/or people with disabilities..
  • Community organizations, chambers of commerce, and other nonprofit organizations working in these program areas are eligible to apply.
  • Port staff will host informational sessions to support applicants through the application process.

About the South King County Community Impact Fund

The Port established the South King County Community Impact Fund (SKCCIF) in 2019 to increase opportunities in historically underserved, ethnically and culturally diverse communities. The SKCCIF is one way the Port works towards its vision of an equitable recovery, environmental sustainability, and a good quality of life. The fund will award $10 million between 2019 and 2024. More than 54 projects have received SKCCIF funding since 2019, helping community-led projects come to fruition. Many of these projects increase job application assistance in underserved and non-English speaking communities, recruit for pre-apprenticeship programs and maritime careers, build gardens, clean public spaces, and expand environmental education.

More info here.

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