Project Amelioration is a community-based partnership bringing together the education, legal, medical, workforce, and recovery communities to develop an alternative “recovery ecosystem” in the heart of the opioid ravaged areas of southwestern Virginia.

Project Amelioration Serving Lee, Scott, and Wise Counties along with the city of Norton, Virginia, Mountain Empire Community College provides training in the skilled trades to those in active recovery suffering from Substance Use Disorder (SUD) and those who have been deeply affected by SUD. Skilled trades courses (carpentry, masonry, and plumbing) in nationally accredited associations are offered along with wrap-around services to help eliminate barriers to training and employment. Students receive hands-on training along with referrals/access to legal aid services, financial education, work ethics certification, Morale Reconation Treatment (MRT), OSHA Certification, counseling services, social services, and employment assistance.

Project A photos

Project Amelioration courses are housed in our Workforce Department and are offered at our Center for Workforce & Innovation in Appalachia, Virginia. Most courses run 15 weeks, Monday-Thursday from 5-9pm and are taught by a licensed trades instructor. We provide all supplies and materials for free including books and tools, as well as a meal every evening. Tuition is little to NO cost to students with help from financial aid. Hands-on work is completed on our campus site or at various locations in Appalachia, Virginia, to help provide construction services to the community for free to aid toward their re-building efforts.

For more information on this program or to register for classes please contact Stephanie New at 276-523-9123 or