Early Implementation of the Welfare-to-Work Grants Program: Findings From Exploratory Site Visits and Review of Program Plans. D. Welfare-to-Work Services to Participants

02/01/2000

The WtW legislation defines eligibility criteria and allowable services, but leaves grantees considerable latitude to target eligible subgroups and tailor services. In both the first grantee survey and the 22 exploratory visits to grantee sites, special efforts were made to discover to what extent, and how, grantees were taking advantage of this latitude. The exploratory visits, although conducted at only a small, nonrandom sample of sites, support two findings from the first grantee survey. First, they support the survey finding that about half of all programs simply intend to serve all WtW-eligible individuals, and about half are attempting in some way to focus their efforts on specific subgroups of the overall eligible population. The site visits revealed, though, that nearly all programs, including those that focus mainly on specific subgroups, are prepared to serve all categories of eligibles. Second, findings from the exploratory visits underscored the considerable extent to which grantees are developing special employment components, including an emphasis on job retention and supportive work experiences.