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Everett nonprofit offers childcare training as Snohomish County deals with 'significant gap'

The endeavor aims to alleviate a dearth of childcare workers in Snohomish County while also providing transitional job training

EVERETT, Wash. — A Snohomish County-based nonprofit is helping train childcare workers while offering job training for people looking to get out of poverty.

Tomorrow's Hope Child Development Center in Everett will be where its parent nonprofit group, HopeWorks, will hold entry-level childcare staff training starting January.

"There is a nationwide shortage in childcare workers, but in Snohomish County there is a significant gap," said HopeWorks Social Enterprises Chief Operating Officer Renata Maybruck.

Maybruck said HopeWorks is working to closing that gap by offering a 13-week training program for positions like teacher's aides and kitchen workers.

"We have an opportunity to train people in large-scale cafeteria work, which is also a career pathway in high demand since the pandemic closed many of our industry partners," Maybruck said.

It's also a tradeoff for Tomorrow's Hope, which will look into bringing in the people train as their own employees.

"Now that people are needing to get back to work, in higher volumes, we're seeing people really seeing this as an opportunity and a training pathway that might not have been there," Maybruck said.

HopeWorks will be looking to fill entry-level positions as well as advanced childcare positions for qualified teachers who have Early Childhood Education degrees or working toward one.

Tomorrow's Hope teachers, like Meagan Waller, said the work is rewarding.

"A lot of our teachers are super positive people and have been working with kids for a while," Waller said.

Waller has been working at Tomorrow's Hope for two years and her specialty is teaching toddlers, some of whom have come from foster care homes or at-risk situations.

"The population we work with can have some trauma in their past and so it takes a little bit more knowledge and expertise on how to handle those kids," Waller said.

Tomorrow's Hope recently obtained a behavioral health license. 

It is just one job training social enterprise among four offered by HopeWorks, which includes Kindred Kitchen for the catering business, ReNew Home & Decor for consignment retail experience, and GroundWorks Landscaping for landscaping job training.