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Gila River Indian Community Receives $3 Million From U.S. Labor Department to Fund Workforce Innovation

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In the first ever use of the Career Pathways model for employment services in Indian Country, the U.S. Labor Department has granted the Gila River Indian Community $3 million to fund workforce innovation—a model dubbed "Pay for Success."

Career Pathways is the Department of Labor’s Employment and Training Administration's workforce development strategy to support workers’ transitions from education through training and the workforce.

Today Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis announced the funding to develop new strategies to help tribal residents return to work. The goal is to streamline services and facilitate cooperation across programs and funding streams. "Pay for Success" will focus on partnerships with specific employers or industry sectors to create programs that reflect current and future skill needs.

The Gila River Indian Community's award is among 26 grants, ranging from $1 million to $12 million each, totaling $146.9 million awarded nationwide today. They will benefit state workforce agencies and local workforce investment boards, as well as one Workforce Investment Act Section 166 grantee serving Indian and Native American communities.

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“The Workforce Innovation Fund was created to cultivate and test innovative approaches to workforce training,” said Secretary Solis. “Today’s grant is an opportunity for the Gila River Indian Community to develop practices and programs that could serve as a model for the nation and is one more step to expanding the pool of workforce development programs available to Indian and Native American communities.”

In spring 2013, the Labor Department expects to announce the availability of another $20 million for the second round of Workforce Innovation Fund funding to support "Pay for Success." The initiative represents a new way of financing workforce investment projects through which the government only pays for services that achieve measurable results, shifting the risk of investment from the government to the private sector.

For more information about Pay for Success and to view the solicitation for grant applications, visit To learn more about the Workforce Innovation Fund, visit For a full list of Workforce Innovation Fund grantees, go to