Refuge plans Job Fair April 22
by CHRISTY ARMSTRONG Banner Staff Writer
Apr 13, 2014 | 1110 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A local nonprofit called The Refuge will soon host another job fair in hopes of helping more people find employment.

The job fair will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Tuesday, April 22, at the Bradley Square Mall, a location organizers hope will draw in larger crowds.

The organization’s first job fair took place at the Blythe Family Support Center, where The Refuge’s offices are located. Director of Community Involvement Kelli Kyle said the mall has agreed to let the organization host the fair there for free, and the location has attracted the attention of a dozen more local companies.

“It’s such a great location for the community,” Kyle said.

She added the job fair will have a more central location than the previous one, and the mall is accessible to people who use Cleveland’s public bus system.

The fair will take place near the mall entrance next to the Santa Fe Cattle Co. restaurant, and job hunters will be able to meet with representatives from about 30 different businesses and staffing agencies. Kyle said the majority of the companies represented were not present at The Refuge’s fall job fair, so there will be different opportunities available to those who may still be searching for work.

The following companies have confirmed their attendance: Advantage Resourcing, Aid & Assist at Home, Automation Personnel Services, Big Lots, Chase Professionals, Christian Women’s Job Corp, Cleveland Career Center, CVS Pharmacy, Dairy Queen, Dunham’s Sports, Express Employment, Family Resource Agency, Global Personnel, Goodwill, Job Corps of Chattanooga, K&S Communications, Life Bridges, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Manpower, Maurices, Mr. Zip, Omni Visions, OmniSource, OneSource Workforce Readiness Center at Cleveland State Community College, Prologistix, Randstad, Right Time Right Place Staffing, Staff Management, Signature HealthCare and T.J. Maxx.

Kyle said the job fair event fits well with The Refuge’s mission, and its staff members hope to keep it at least an annual event. She said they regularly encounter people who are in need of jobs to support themselves and their families but struggle to find work through impersonal methods like filling out online applications.

“It just makes sense for us to host a job fair,” she said. “It makes a big difference.” 

The organization already offers free classes to help people learn things like computer and personal finance skills at its Access 180 center located down the hall from its offices, but Kyle said the act of hosting a job fair is an additional way The Refuge is trying to help people struggling to find work get back on their feet.

Israel Waldrop, an AmeriCorps Vista at The Refuge, pointed out that the event is free for everyone involved, including the companies that want to hire new employees.

Both he and Kyle stressed that the organization does not make any money from the job fairs and are simply interested in seeing people find jobs. The fairs also offer rare chances for both employers and would-be employees to learn about the types of jobs available locally.

To help people prepare for the upcoming job fair, The Refuge will also be hosting two free resumé writing workshops on April 16 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and on April 17 from 1 to 4 p.m. at the organization’s office at 1075 Blythe Ave., Suite 4, in Cleveland.

Students from a technical writing class at Lee University will be volunteering their time to walk people through the process of creating or updating a resumé on a computer. Attendees of the events will also learn how to write follow-up letters and will be able to print free copies of the resumés and letters they write, Kyle said.

Everyone who attends the job fair is encouraged to arrive ready to apply for available job openings.

For more information about the job fair or resumé writing events, call 423-584-5211, email info@refugecl.org or visit www.refugecl.org.