Youth Job Training at the Collegium
The Tri Cities has one of the best economies in the United States. There are houses constantly being built and many jobs available within both Franklin and Benton County. And yet, we find many young adults lack the experience required to obtain these jobs. Its not just that they don’t have official professional experience, but that for many in East pasco, it is simply a matter of lacking the work experience outside of the fields.
From an Early age, some of these children are instilled a tough work ethic, going out to work with parents, while some never know what its like to work hard or earn anything themselves. This has become a rising issue in this generation, and so we want to do something about it. When students in the area have been asked, it was unanimous that they believe working in a coffee shop is the coolest job a high schooler can have. So we want to help them do it right.
The Youth Cafe Program is designed to help Students get the skills and experience needed to benefit them in work in the future. It is staffed by volunteers from the CFS staff , however, all the training is done only by Collegium café staff. The trainers are supported both in presence and in scheduling by CFS staff. Most of these kids simply need someone who is a positive role model in their lives, and can love and encourage them to start dreaming and searching for God’s dream in their lives.
The program allows for 10 students ranging from the ages of 14 -19 per quarter. This way we can schedule 2 students per day and 1 trainer per day as well. For some of us this means multiple days, but it again is all volunteer. Students also have the option to come and work more hours on Fridays since it will be busier then, and it is on a first come first serve basis. (In order to avoid “too many cooks in the kitchen”)
The students are working volunteer (no pay) so that they may gain the Job skill and work experience they need to acquire jobs.
One of the most beautiful things we have experienced thus far has been the increase in a sense of ownership of the Cafe. The same kids who would throw and leave their trash all over are now the ones who can’t help but be compelled to pick up cups they see on the tables and bring them to the sink… even when they are not on the clock. The leadership and excellent character that is being developed is extraordinary to witness and be a part of , and we can already get a sense of how tremendously these future leaders will impact their generation.
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