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Real Pathways Rhode Island (RI)

Grants to Rhode Island Nonprofits and Education and
Training Providers to Improve Employment Options

Agency Type:


Funding Source:

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Rhode Island Governor’s Workforce Board (GWB) - Rhode Island Department of Labor and Training (DLT)

Conf. Date:


Deadline Date:

08/03/20 4:00 PM EST


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Grants to Rhode Island nonprofit organizations, community-based organizations, and education and training providers to benefit employers and employees throughout the state, especially due to the impact of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Applicants are expected to form partnerships and collaborations to meet the specific needs of job seekers with barriers to employment. Programs are expected to lead to participants being hired or promoted as a result of training or intervention.

The purpose of Real Pathways RI is to promote and support partnerships between and among public, private, and nonprofit agencies, education and training providers, and other partners as necessary, within a specific geographic region, or who focus on a similar population with barriers to employment (ex. Individuals with a disability, persons experiencing homelessness, former offenders, etc.). These partnerships collaborate to build workforce solutions that address the unique workforce challenge their clients face. Through such a model: efforts are coordinated, not duplicated; resources are leveraged, not overextended; and providers focus more on what they do best and less on extending their core mission to meet grant expectations.

Bridging the Long-term Gap between Talent and Opportunity

Beyond responding to the immediate health and economic challenges brought about by Covid-19, Real Pathways RI endeavors to close the long-term opportunity gap between job seekers with barriers to employment and employment opportunities the state’s largest and/or growing industries. To that end, the program seeks to:

  • Encourage mobility for Rhode Islanders with barriers to employment through targeted job training and other workforce solutions that lead to jobs, increased wages, and increased educational/credential attainment;
  • Connect RI’s growing industries with much-needed talent;
  • Address the needs of workers by creating formal career paths to good jobs, and sustaining or growing middle class jobs;
  • Promote collaboration, not competition, between and among entities that provide employment and training services for similar populations or regions of the state; and
  • Address ‘systems gaps’ and deficiencies within the current education and workforce development network.

Purpose and Priorities of the Implementation Grant:

The purpose of the Implementation Grant is to provide awardees with funding to implement workforce solutions designed to address barriers to employment and other systemic challenges facing populations with barriers to employment, or region of the state with a higher than average concentration of unemployment and/or poverty.

GrantWatch ID#:

GrantWatch ID#: 190642

Estimated Size of Grant:

Applicants are strongly encouraged to submit an initial grant request that does not exceed $150,000.

Term of Contract:

The performance period for the Real Pathways Partnerships established will be until June 30, 2021 - with an option to renew the Partnership Agreement for an additional two years.

Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Eligible Lead Applicants:
The Lead Applicant is the lead contact and administrator for all grant-related activities. The Lead Applicant may be any of the following:
- Nonprofits
- Community-based organizations
- Education and training providers
- Other relevant partners that traditionally provide employment and training services to similar populations (example: Veterans, out-of-school youth, ex-offenders, low-income families, English Language learners) or regions of the state.

An entity may be a Lead Applicant of more than one Real Pathways Partnership and/or a Real Jobs Partnership; however, they must speak to their capacity to manage multiple efforts in their proposal. Furthermore, it is the priority of the GWB to partner with a diverse and comprehensive network of providers to help as many Rhode Islanders as possible. For this reason, applicants should be advised that entities not currently receiving GWB funding may be prioritized over current partners

Required Partnership Structure:
At a minimum, the following must be identified in the Implementation Grant Proposal and must demonstrate commitment to participating in the workforce solution:
- At least two organizations (including but not limited to: public, private, community-based, and non-profit agencies, training and education providers, and others) that serve a similar population with barriers to employment (ex: veterans, ex-offenders, non-English speakers) or region of the state with higher than average concentration of unemployment and/or poverty;
- At least two representatives from employers/industry (including but not limited to: employers in the same industry or with a similar workforce/talent need; representatives from a regional Chamber of Commerce, representatives from a trade/industry organization, a Real Jobs RI sector partner, a local or regional economic development agency, or a labor union)

An entity may be a member of more than one Real Pathways Partnership

Pre-proposal Conference:

Pre-Proposal Conference:
Virtual Conference
Monday June 29, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. EST

Interested parties must register in advance at:

All Conference-related materials will be made available online for those who cannot attend.

Pre-Application Information:

- Solicitation Issue Date: June 16, 2020
- Closing Date and Time: Monday, August 3, 2020 by 4:00pm
- Awards Announced: Mid- September

Submission of Questions: All questions related to this solicitation should be submitted via email no later than Monday, July 6, 2020

Q&A Posting: All questions and answers addressed via email or at the PreProposal Conference will be posted to the Real Pathways RI website by Friday, July 10, 2020

Contact Information:

Before starting your grant application, please review the funding source's website listed below for updates/changes/addendums/conferences/LOIs.

Proposals are to be submitted to:
Electronically to:
Robert Kalaskowski at

By Mail:
RI Department of Labor and Training
1511 Pontiac Avenue
Cranston, RI 02920
Attention: Real Pathways RI
Hand delivery cannot be accepted at this time

Submit questions to:

URL for Full Text (RFP):

Geographic Focus:

USA: Rhode Island

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