The Employment and Training Department at Washington-Morgan Community Action is helping people get jobs and establish careers from 14 year olds to senior citizens. Case managers are available for support and to help keep participants on track. The Workforce Investment Act, or WIA, helps people return to the workforce by helping them develop their skills. With additional money from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (AARA), even more people are now able to return to the workforce.
There are two different types of funding for adults under WIA. The first type allows case managers from Washington-Morgan Community Action to assist participants find another job through retraining after losing their current job through a layoff or by no fault of their own. The second is for displaced homemakers who need an education or retraining to become self-sufficient. A displaced homemaker is someone who has been taking care of the house while a spouse worked and, for whatever reason, the spouse is now gone, leaving no financial support.
The WIA program helps participants receive training for a maximum of two years. Participants can enroll in classes to get a commercial drivers license (CDL), an associate’s degree or complete the last two years of a four year degree. The training participants receive is always for in demand occupations. The goal is to get participants into the workforce with the skills to build a career, not just have a job.
Participants are taken care of from the very beginning. After being accepted into the program, they are assigned a case manager. These dedicated people make sure that the training will lead to an enjoyable career that participants will excel in. They will then check in with their case managers every week so Washington Morgan Community Action can help keep track of their progress and offer other services that may be helpful.
Not only are adults helped with building their skills, but youth ages 14 to 21 are also eligible to participate. Most of the participants are in high school looking for work experience. However, education is a priority within the WIA programs. If a student’s grades start to slip, they are not allowed to work until they improve.
The case managers are there to offer support and will help lead students to other resources that may help them with behavioral issues and mental health. A year after the students have completed the program, the case managers do a follow-up to see if students need additional assistance and if the experience helped them.
The Ombudsman Program helps Morgan County at risk youth, grades kindergarten through their senior year. The case manager helps with truancy issues and improving grades to help assure that high school is completed. The Ombudsman Program helps between 35 and 45 kids per year. It uses school, juvenile court and parent referrals to reach participants. The case worker will then work with these different sources to make sure they can help the child. The goal is to keep these kids out of the court system and foster care and help them become productive citizens with hope for a better future. This can also be done by having the participants also enroll in the Youth WIA program.
The Ombudsman Program is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Without this funding the program could not operate.
The Senior Aide Program helps adults 55 or older who want an opportunity to get back into the workforce. Participants gain new skills or improve old skills while assigned to a nonprofit organization or governmental subdivision. This subsidized work program allows seniors to earn a pay check while looking for unsubsidized work, and a case manager is available to provide assistance and support. The Senior Aide Program is a temporary position to get enrollees familiar with the workforce again. Participants are usually at a given agency for one year, but they may participate in the program for four years. The participants have lots of life experience that needs to be shared with others in the workforce. This program helps make that happen.
The Resource Room at Washington Morgan Community Action helps link people with the resources that they need in order to get a job or start a career. Anyone from Washington and Morgan counties looking for a job can come in and use Internet connected computers and the telephone. A case manager is available to help those interested in searching for a job or creating a resume.
All of these programs are helping people go to school, find a job, go back to school or retrain for another job. The education and support resources offered through the Employment and Training Department can help people find a job or advance in their chosen career. Whether the participants are learning through classes, on the job training or work experience, the skills that they are gaining will help them achieve growth and success.
Washington-Morgan Community Action Washington and Morgan Counties, Ohio
218 Putnam Street, Marietta, OH 45750 (740) 373-3745
50 W. Third Street, PO Box 398, Malta, OH 43758 (740) 962-3827