Coalfield Development Corporation

Roxy Todd/ WVPB

This week we meet the next person we’ll be following in our Struggle to Stay series. 37-year-old Crystal Snyder is a single mother of two, who says she wants to stay in West Virginia, where her family has lived for several generations. But being a single mom in West Virginia is challenging for her, and sometimes she worries whether raising two kids in this state is good for their health. 

Roxy Todd

20-year-old Colt Brogan always found it easy to make fairly good grades in school. As a kid, he’d dreamed of being an architect. But that changed. Around the time when he was a junior in high school, Colt decided college wasn’t for him.

“It felt too unpredictable. I thought, dealing drugs is safer than going to college. That’s the God’s honest truth,” says Colt.

Rebecca Kiger

Can a photograph help a community grow? One photographer is shedding some light on ongoing efforts in a region looking for some new ways to sustain itself.

Last month the Coalfield Development Corporation and Solar Holler announced they would expand an already existing partnership to help transition miners from coal jobs into a new industry. The announcement meant a new training facility at West Edge in the Westmoreland neighborhood of Huntington, but will work with laid off miners throughout the state’s southern coalfields.

West Edge Solar
Clark Davis / WV Public Broadcasting

The Coalfield Development Corporation took another step Wednesday in the advancement of a solar institute.

At the West Edge Factory in the Westmoreland neighborhood of Huntington, the Coalfield Development Corporation has a solar training program that teaches former coal miners and others how to install solar panels as a possible career path.

Clark Davis

A West Virginia group that helps retrain coal miners who were laid off is receiving an $800,000 federal grant.

U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Shelley Moore Capito announced the grant Thursday for the Coalfield Development Corporation's factory in Wayne.

Job Training Graduation Held at West Edge

Jun 22, 2016
Coalfield Graduation
Clark Davis / West Virginia Public Broadcasting

The Coalfield Development Corporation hosted its first graduation of the job training program, Reclaim Appalachia.

The two-year Reclaim Appalachia program provides training in environmental service jobs such as asbestos and lead abatement, mold remediation and meth-lab cleanup as well as offering classes on how to install solar power panels. 

Saws Edge
Clark Davis / WV Public Broadcasting

Since acquiring the old Corbin Factory building in Westmoreland in the summer of 2014, the Coalfield Development Corporation has turned the building, now called West Edge, into a hub of training and opportunity. West Edge has developed a woodworking workshop that’s slowly cutting into the areas unemployment numbers. 

Glen Wilson is a former marine corps veteran from Wayne.

A Homestead Act for Appalachia

May 22, 2016
Appalachian Trail
e-wv, The West Virginia Encyclopedia / Kathleen Mallow-Sager

Appalachia, especially its coal mining region, is experiencing a revived bit of attention as shuttered mines, a rise in income inequality and longstanding poverty received flashes of concern from both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. 

Asbestos Abatement
Magnus Manske / Wikimedia Commons

Despite a recent drop in West Virginia’s unemployment rate, many of the state’s industries continue to see a decline in jobs. One company is using federal grant money to help improve the lives of those who have found themselves out of work in the southwestern part of the state.

Brian Spence is from Wayne, West Virginia. He’s one of many people who were laid off from the Rockspring mine in May He said it was time to find something else. 

Clark Davis

A nonprofit organization and Marshall University are teaming up to provide training in environmental remediation jobs.

The Coalfield Development Corporation and the university's Center for Environmental, Geotechnical and Applied Sciences announced the two-year initiative Monday.

Clark Davis

A local factory that’s been vacant for more than ten years could be the next step in making Huntington the go-to place for artists in the state.

The Coalfield Development Corporation hopes a new idea can lead to a great outcome. They’ve purchased the former Corbin garment factory property in Westmoreland, a neighborhood just inside Huntington’s city limits in the west end of town. The Wayne County Economic Development Authority sold them the property for $110,000 in an effort to spark development in the area.