Missouri’s version of JOBS, a national program model enacted through the Family Support Act of 1988 to support Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) recipients in finding employment, used a flexible approach to match individuals’ needs to targeted work, education, and training activities.
Individuals first worked intensively with a case manager to determine the most appropriate services to help them find employment, including attending an orientation; receiving assessments measuring their educational attainment, interests, and needs; and developing an individual employability plan. Based on that plan, participants engaged in a wide variety of activities, such as life-skills training; substance abuse programs; remedial educational activities; job training or vocational training, including on-the-job and classroom-based training; job-search and job-readiness services; and postsecondary education activities. Case managers also connected participants to supportive services, such as child care and transportation assistance. Individuals could be sanctioned if they did not participate in program activities for at least 20 hours per week or were not exempt because of their own age or the age of their children. Participants were AFDC recipients who volunteered for the program. The Missouri JOBS program was implemented statewide and evaluated in four regions of the state: Kansas City, St. Louis, northeastern Missouri, and southeastern Missouri.