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Cleanslate Launches in Gary, Indiana

Social enterprise’s expansion part of $1.2M investment in city’s revitalization

Chicago/Gary, Ind. – Cara, a leading workforce development organization based in Chicago, announced today the expansion of its social enterprise Cleanslate into Gary, Indiana, starting Tuesday, June 30.

The move is part of a larger $1.2 million investment in the revitalization of the downtown Gary community through the city’s Gary Go Team initiative – which envisions community regeneration and a resetting of city standards through key focus points including employment, litter remediation, and job training.

As part of this partnership, Cleanslate is projected to create between 25 to 35 jobs annually for citizens of Gary while providing cleaner, safer streets and communities through litter services in key city gateways, corridors, and commercial areas including Broadway, Miller Beach, and other zones determined by the city’s Public Works Department.

“Cleaning up the City of Gary has been one of our highest priorities,” said Gary Mayor Jerome A. Prince. “Working with an innovative group like Cara and launching Cleanslate helps us clean up our city, and, just as importantly, it gives many of our residents an opportunity to build a solid work history and develop marketable skills. It’s a win-win situation.”

This launch comes on the heels of the 15th anniversary of Cleanslate, which seeks to transform the physical and socioeconomic landscapes of our communities. Cleanslate crews can be found on routes in more than 42 Chicago communities as well as in cities including Aurora and Munster, among others. More than 400 transitional job opportunities are created annually for people with some of the highest barriers to employment.

“I am so grateful for this opportunity to bring Cleanslate to the Gary community,” said Brady Gott, Managing Director of Cleanslate. “In a time when we are hearing more and more about layoffs and furloughs, it’s inspiring to be able to create new jobs and new opportunities for job seekers. We are so excited to see Cleanslate’s transformative magic at work in Gary, and we look forward to a long, successful partnership.”

About Cleanslate: A social enterprise of Cara, Cleanslate seeks to transform the landscape of our communities and our lives. We provide what some may consider an ordinary service in an extraordinary way, so that all Chicago neighborhoods can take pride in the safety, revitalization, and vibrancy that is created through clean streetscapes serviced by motivated job seekers. Since 2005, more than 3,400 Cara participants have worked in transitional jobs created by Cleanslate – with more than 1,100 of those individuals going on to secure gainful employment. To learn more, please visit www.cleanslatechicago.org.

About Cara: Cara’s mission is to unlock the power and purpose within our communities and ourselves to create real and lasting success. Through our personal and professional development and access to employment opportunities, Cara serves as a leader in poverty alleviation in Chicago and beyond. Since 1991, more than 6,800 people have been placed into more than 10,600 jobs and started on their path to self- sufficiency. To learn more, please visit www.caracollective.org.