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Certification program for Puerto Rico’s reconstruction launched

The Puerto Rico Community Foundation (FCPR, in Spanish) and Hunter College have announced that registration is open for professional certification in the multisectoral reconstruction of Puerto Rico, with courses starting on Feb. 20.

This free educational opportunity is offered in Spanish and is designed to enhance professional skills for participation in post-disaster reconstruction and economic recovery projects, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) analysis and funding proposal development.

An orientation session is scheduled for Feb. 15 for those who have registered at this website. To earn the certification, participants must complete six virtual courses.

The certification targets undergraduate and graduate students, community leaders, community and nonprofit organization staff, municipal employees, and social enterprise leaders involved or interested in multisectoral reconstruction.

“The certification contributes to strengthening Puerto Rico’s human capital by increasing the number of professionals with skills related to federal post-disaster reconstruction and economic recovery projects,” stated Nelson Colón-Tarrats, president and CEO of FCPR. In addition, we are honored to have the support and educational experience of Hunter College for the implementation of this continuing education project.”

The certification is offered by the FCPR and Hunter College, a prominent public university in New York, and is funded by the Puerto Rico Housing Department through Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) Workforce Training Program (WFT) funds.

“The participant who completes the six courses will have acquired the necessary skills to submit proposals to public agencies and philanthropic foundations for the implementation of post-disaster reconstruction and economic recovery projects,” said Edwin Meléndez, professor at Hunter College. “In addition, the certification supports the participant in retaining their employment and advancing professionally; and if unemployed, the certification expands their recruitment possibilities in positions related to economic recovery and the use of federal funds.”

Courses will take place on weekdays, with start times between 5 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. The courses offered are:

  • Administration and management of federal grants
  • How to start or transform a nonprofit organization (NPO) into a Community Development Corporation (CDC)
  • How to develop a resilient community center for economic and social development
  • Financing and development of housing and commercial buildings
  • CDBG-DR funds and other economic recovery funds
  • Housing’s role in economic recovery and urban revitalization
  • Sustainability and legal frameworks for social enterprises
  • Writing effective funding proposals

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