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What is the Total Action for Progress SwiftStart Program?

TAP’s SwiftStart program gives more working parents in southwestern Virginia career pathways to secure higher-wage jobs by helping them find and acquire affordable, quality child care while attending skills training programs. Designed to move systems toward a “whole family” model by integrating child-focused and parent-focused two-generation systems, SwiftStart provides education/job training services to low- and middle- skilled parents with child care responsibilities to help them pursue or advance in, middle- to high-skilled, full-time employment. SwiftStart employs career pathway development, short-term intensive training, credential-focused training and other best practices so that participants’ training will qualify them for employment in middle- and high-skilled jobs in healthcare, advanced manufacturing, and information technology (IT). Credentials participants will earn will vary according to training track but may include Comp-TIA A+, MCSA, NIMS certifications, AWS certifications, EMT-B, LPN, and more.

What areas does this program serve?

In the Roanoke Valley, residents of Roanoke City, Roanoke County, Vinton, Salem, Botetourt and Craig are eligible for the SwiftStart program. In the New River Valley, residents of Floyd, Giles, Montgomery and Pulaski Counties and the City of Radford may participate.

Is there a cost for this service?

There is no direct cost for this program, although we may not be able to cover 100% of training or child care costs in every circumstance or for every career track. We will however work with each participant and a range of community partners to reduce overall barriers, including financial barriers, to a level that facilitates full and successful participation in the program.

How can I access services?

Parents currently participating in Head Start or Early Head Start should ask their Family Development Specialist for a referral to a SwiftStart Career Mentor.

Other parents should contact our Two Generation Coordinators which are housed within the workforce development system.

  • Roanoke Area: Contact Carolyn Coles at or call 540-819-9644.
  • New River Valley: Contact Michelle Sadler at or call 540-655-2448.

Employers in healthcare, information technology and advanced manufacturing interested in the program for new hires or training of incumbent workers should contact the project director, David Moore, at or 540-553-1454.

Am I eligible for this service?

All training participants must be 17 years or older who are out-of-secondary school, eligible to work in the United States, and considered the custodial parent, legal guardian, foster parent, or other person standing in loco of:

  • At least one dependent that is 13 years of age or younger; or
  • At least one dependent with a disability or developmental delay that may exceed 13 years of age.

Applicants must demonstrate aptitude and ability for a career in one of the targeted career tracks in healthcare, information technology or advanced manufacturing. Furthermore, there must be potential job openings locally in the selected career track to support future employment.

Finally, participants must demonstrate an ability to be successful in the program in order to be accepted for full enrollment and assistance with child care and training costs.

Priorities in Participant Selection

SwiftStart provides priority service to veterans and spouses of certain veterans for the receipt of employment, training, and placement services in job training programs. To obtain priority of service, a veteran or spouse must meet the program’s eligibility requirements.

Among other eligible participants, SwiftStart is particularly interested in services to the following categories of parents:

  • Parents enrolled in or pre-qualified for one or more of the following programs:
    • Head Start and Early Head Start;
    • WIOA Title I Adult and Dislocated Worker (including displaced homemakers);
    • WIOA Title I Youth;
    • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF);
    • Child Care Development Block Grant (Child Care Development Fund);
    • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Employment and Training (SNAP);
    • Community Service Block Grant; or
    • Community Development Block Grant;
  • Military spouses with dependents in need of training and employment assistance;
  • Unemployed or underemployed low-skilled parents with training and child care needs;
  • Low-skilled frontline incumbent workers who are parents with child care responsibilities. Note: No more than twenty five percent (25%) of the participants enrolled may be incumbent workers that meet the eligibility criteria.

Your donations are necessary to make this program possible.

Community Partnerships and Funding

Information forthcoming