November 14, 2019

Springfield, MA—Way Finders recently held a Celebration of Success ceremony for its Employment Support program’s partners and participants. Since the inception of the Employment Support program, Way Finders has placed more than 715 individuals into stable employment with over 260 employers with an average minimum wage of $12.96.  

Those in attendance at the celebration included Way Finders’ President and CEO Peter Gagliardi; State Representative Bud Williams; A representative from the office of State Representative Joseph Wagner; Jennifer Marrapese from United Personnel; Springfield Ward 4 City Councilor-elect Malo Brown; and Employment Support program participants.

Honorees at the event included 10 program participants and their families. United Personnel was awarded the 2019 Employer of the Year award and State Representative Joseph Wagner was awarded the 2019 Legislative Champion award. 

In 2013, the Secure Jobs initiative was launched as a way to help lift families out of homelessness. Because of the lack of affordable housing and the shortage of housing vouchers, employment became a primary focus in helping people who are struggling with homelessness. Through co-case management with housing workers and person-centered goals created with participant’s needs, strengths, and abilities in mind, 90% of individuals participating in Way Finders’ program have been able to maintain their housing.

“I am so proud of our honorees tonight. I have watched so many of them come into our weekly job development groups unsure of what they were getting themselves into and now they know just how much they have to offer. Everyone I talk to says that they aren’t doing this for themselves, they are doing this for their children,” said Maegan Pedemonti, Director of Employment Support Services at Way Finders. 

Way Finders offers Employment Support Services to anyone who qualifies. For more information on program eligibility, click