First Step Staffing’s alternative staffing model combines the market-driven demand of contract staffing with a mission-based employment strategy to employ those that have been most disenfranchised from the workforce. With targeted support, including intentional job coaching and a robust transportation program, they help clients obtain and retain jobs. The United States is currently losing the battle on homelessness. Despite current unemployment rates, the homeless population has grown in the last three years and is expected to grow again this year.
As cities continue to struggle with scalable and impactful solutions for ending homelessness, the national and local responses are vastly over weighted towards investments in outdated ideas centered on supported housing, such as building subsidized housing and rapid rehousing models. While this strategy shows quick results in moving people off the streets and into housing, these gains are unsustainable as they fail to provide a source of income and rely heavily on government support. With income, secure housing becomes possible and First Step clients begin a journey to economic self-sufficiency.
First Step provided immediate job placement to more than 10,000 individuals during their grant period with Rising Tide and 100,000 rides to and from work. Combined, these men and women earned more than $70 million in wages. Finally, First Step has expanded into 4 new cities and touched thousands of lives. One particular individual that has benefited incredibly from First Step Staffing's activities is Ms. Gladys. After losing her husband to a tragic accident in Florida in 2018, Gladys moved to Georgia seeking a fresh start - but the emotional toll from the loss of her husband got the best of her, and Gladys ended up homeless.
Gladys found First Step on her own and was excited about the possibility of securing "immediate employment". Gladys was immediately placed into a job following her initial visit to First Step Staffing. She thrived in this role and was then promoted to supervisor and ultimately hired permanently by the Georgia International Convention Center. In addition to employment, Gladys worked with their Support Services team for assistance with financial management and budgeting. Today, Gladys is still working as a supervisor, enrolled in school for a nursing degree, and in safe, stable housing. Gladys expressed her gratitude to First Step Staffing, saying, "Without First Step and God, of course, I wouldn’t have gone this far, but I am humble, so I know I would have reached my goals, but this was much quicker. As we say in Jamaica, Big Up First Step all the time!"