Opportunity Fair held at Counseling Center

Counseling Center Employment Specialist Sherri Burton helps a youth complete their Callos Payroll Services Application.
Participants were given “First Day Work Bags” that included a water bottle, pen and notepad for taking notes, and a calendar to keep track of schedules. (Submitted photos)

LISBON — On May 4 The Counseling Center of Columbiana County brought together over 100 young adults, parents and employers to talk about employment at their first annual “Opportunity Fair.” The Counseling Center’s Vocational Department is currently a vendor for the county Work Experience Services offered through the Comprehensive Case Management Employment Program (CCMEP) contract with Mahoning Columbiana Training Association (MCTA).

The Vocational Department plans to have approximately 100 young adults, aged 15 to 24, working around the county this summer. Opportunities to build employment skills include building employment references; meeting employer expectations; and removing barriers to succeed with career goals.

Betty Larkins, vocational services coordinator at the Counseling Center, told the employers, “Our program is looking for mentors willing to provide young adults with the opportunity to learn to become good employees.” She went on to say, “We are not looking to make your jobs harder or have you feel like a babysitting service.”

The Counseling Center is excited to have new and old employment sites agree to host new participants as they build work skills. Currently the Vocational Department has close to 40 work sites in the county. The Young Adults will have opportunities to work in the following fields: Hospitality, maintenance, landscaping, cosmetology, production, healthcare, animal care and construction. Work Experience sites are assigned in accordance with the participant’s skills, abilities, and interest in particular careers or fields. Participant’s hourly wages and Workers Compensation is covered by the program. Most participants have the opportunity to work up to 400 hours over a 12-week period.

Any business interested in becoming a worksite, should contact Betty Larkins at 330-424-9573 Ext. 349. Youth interested in enrolling in the program should contact MCTA at 330-424-7722 Ext. 8209 for more information.