Our Programs:
Designing & Supporting Workforce Pathways

In a state like Maryland, where unemployment is low and many industries are facing a labor shortage, it is important that low-income workers have opportunities to upgrade their skills in order to keep up with the demands of the changing economy and to meet the needs of employers.

While Maryland has a large proportion of highly educated people, many more workers have only a basic education.  Almost 40% of Marylanders have no more than a high school education, and 13% have not even completed high school.

JOTF focuses on “special populations” because distinct and large numbers of individuals continue to be added to them each year in the Baltimore area; high social and economic costs are imposed on them, their families, their communities, and the region; and we do not yet implement adequate preventive and remedial measures to help them realize their full economic potential.

BetterU Construction Training

Baltimore’s Premier Construction Training Program

BetterU Construction Training is a 14-week pre-apprenticeship program for Baltimore residents with a high school diploma or GED. Experienced teachers help students learn plumbing, carpentry and electrical skills. Students also receive essential safety training, financial coaching, a stipend and driver’s education.

Our program gives graduates a full spectrum of career preparation. Through hands-on training, the development of math skills and high-performance standards, our students develop the skills to do the job right and learn how to meet the expectations of a future employer.

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In May 2020, through an anonymous donation, the Job Opportunities Task Force (JOTF) established its first community bail fund – the Community Bail Fund for Baltimore City.  This Fund supports city residents represented by the Maryland Office of the Public Defender who are charged with nonviolent offenses. This Fund prioritizes individuals who identify as women and individuals under the age of 25.   The following month, JOTF began soliciting funds to support individuals incarcerated in pretrial detention due to an unaffordable cash bail. These funds will prioritize pretrial defendants, regardless of gender or age, in Baltimore County, Montgomery and Prince George’s County.  In addition to facilitating the payment of cash bails, JOTF provides customized, intensive case management support to the individuals released. This includes transportation supports, court preparation, connection with critical services and resources, and more.

Learn More about The JOTF Community Bail Fund