If you look closely, you will find many young men and women working at the city’s daycares, summer camps, private businesses, healthcare facilities and municipal departments City of Mount Vernon. The Mount Vernon Youth Bureau has been able to secure funding that enables them to have a summer employment experience.
“Summer youth employment not only prepares youth for their future careers, but offers an alternative to illegal methods of earning money. Summer jobs in the city are extremely important for the local economy since the youth typically reinvest money earned into local businesses”, said DaMia Harris-Madden, Youth Bureau Executive Director.
On June 30, 2014, Mayor Davis greeted a packed City Council Chambers to welcome this year’s program participants. He urged the young people to work hard and do their best because what they learn now will be the framework for their future in tomorrow’s workforce. George Brown, City Clerk, swore in the city’s newest hires. He encouraged them to uphold their duties and to take their temporary summer jobs seriously as they represent the city. Judy Williams, Human Resource Commissioner came by to reiterate the importance of the city’s code of conduct and zero tolerance for violation of work rules.
“Initially, the forecast was very bleak for summer youth employment,” said Mayor Davis. “However, by leveraging grant funds, private sector initiatives and paid stipend programs, the Bureau was able to provide opportunities for some of the city’s young people in a wide spectrum of fields. We remain hopeful opportunities will increase to serve our youth throughout the year and encourage employers to continue making opportunities available for young people. We only wish we could have hired more.”
The Bureau is working with community partners to prepare youth ages 14- 18 for self sufficiency by hiring them to work or participate in occupational skills training for six weeks. Applicants applied in March for summer positions and participated in a rigorous series of job readiness workshops in preparation for interviews. Out of hundreds of applicants that applied only a portion of individuals meeting eligibility requirements became employed through various Youth Bureau Programs; the city’s Youth Employment, GEM; Youth Empowerment; Step Up; C.I.T; CAPP Film; TANF; and Entrepreneurship Summer Academy.
Debbie Butler, Youth Employment Services Coordinator and Tiffany Morris-Murray, Summer Employment Director, worked hand in hand with parents and youth to ensure that the recruitment and selection processes were followed. Referrals were made to private sector employers and non profit organizations where young people were placed.