EAST PROVIDENCE, RI – U.S. Senator Jack Reed today visited Tockwotton on the Waterfront in East Providence to meet with residents and staff and discuss a variety of issues, including economic development, health care, and housing related issues.

Reed was joined at the event by Tockwotton Executive Director Kevin McKay; City Manager Paul Lemont; David Bachrach, Head of the East Providence Community Development Division, as well as other local officials. 

The visit was also a chance to celebrate the City of East Providence’s success utilizing federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funding in partnership with the senior living facility to provide job training to staff and spur job growth.  Tockwotton leveraged $20,000 in CDBG funds to partially finance a job training program for its employees.  With this job training program, for example, Tockwotton trained an existing certified nurse assistant, Sandra D’Ambra, to be a medical technician, a position which commands a higher salary.  Thanks to the job training program, Tockwotton was able to fill 60 full time jobs and 16 part time jobs.  

“It is a pleasure to spend time with the residents at Tockwotton and discuss efforts to enhance economic development and job growth here in East Providence.  The city is partnering with Tockwotton to leverage federal funding and create a job training program that helps workers expand their skills and build successful careers.  The CDBG program has helped Tockwotton create a ladder of opportunity.  And as workers like Sandra climb the ladder, another position opens up below, creating a job opportunity for one of our neighbors to fill,” said Reed, the Ranking Member of the Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development (THUD), which oversees funding for CDBG.

Last year, Reed helped secure $673,082 in CDBG funds for East Providence.

The CDBG program is administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  The program aims to grow affordable housing and retain and expand local businesses in urban communities.  The CDBG program also gives local governments flexibility to use the funds for a wide array of community and economic development purposes.

Tockwotton on the Waterfront is a five-story, 140,000 square-foot home on six acres that offers assisted living, memory care, short term rehabilitation, and long-term care.  The facility allows residents to “age in place” without the distress of having to move elsewhere to receive the services they need as they age.  In addition, the facility allows couples to remain together while receiving different levels and types of support.