News Release

US Department of Labor announces $49.2M in available funding to support career training, wraparound services to connect rural workers with good jobs

Promoting prosperity in Appalachian, Lower Mississippi Delta, Northern Border regions

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Labor today announced the availability of $49.2 million in funding to provide career training services to prepare workers in the Appalachian, Lower Mississippi Delta and Northern Border regions to obtain quality jobs. 

The Workforce Opportunity for Rural Communities Initiative demonstration grants, which range in size from  $150,000 to $1.5 million, will fund projects to provide career training and supportive services to workers who live or work in these regions to help them secure good-paying, stable jobs in high-demand occupations. WORC grants are intended to promote economic mobility; address historic inequities in marginalized communities, including people of color, people with disabilities and other underrepresented communities; and produce high-quality employment outcomes enabling workers to remain and thrive in these communities. 

The sixth round of funding is made available in partnership with the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Delta Regional Authority and the Northern Border Regional Commission

Administered by the department’s Employment and Training Administration, WORC grants align with the Biden-Haris administration’s Justice40 Initiative, which aims to ensure that 40 percent of the overall benefits of certain federal investments flow to disadvantaged communities that are marginalized, underserved and overburdened by pollution. WORC grants also align with the Rural Partners Network, an all-of-government program that connects rural communities with resources and funding to create jobs, build infrastructure and support long-term economic mobility.

The department awarded WORC grants in Sept. 2019Sept. 2020Sept. 2021Sept. 2022 and Sept. 2023 totaling nearly $166 million.

Learn more about Workforce Opportunity for Rural Communities Initiative grants and apply


Employment and Training Administration
April 4, 2024
Release Number
Media Contact: Monica Vereen
Media Contact: Jake Andrejat
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