A success story in the making
At a recent training, I learned that the leading cause of death in the population of youth whom we serve is automobile accidents where drugs and alcohol are involved, followed by homicides, and then suicides. What do all of those youth have in common? They don’t have jobs.
At SAY, it’s my job to help young people ages 14-21 find jobs, and get on the right path. Together, we work through any barriers they may have in getting or maintaining a job. Barriers can be anything from being a teen parent, or having learning difficulties, to coming from a low income background or dropping out of school. The fact that the main commonality among all of the teens who don’t make it to adulthood is a lack of employment tells me that my work is important because it’s about helping people, saving lives, and giving young adults opportunities to stay invested in their lives and in their communities.
For teens who need help finding a job, I help by giving presentations about resume preparation and career exploration, and also coordinate GED preparation, and get teens who have dropped out hooked up with the adult school. Sometimes, I’ve even taken teens to classes to make sure that they’re getting there.
Recently, I worked with Michael, an inspirational 19 year old who had worked with us in the Summer Jobs program and had dropped out of school.