In late August, a caravan of cars arrived at a warehouse. The three programs of the Workforce Development Center – Workforce Connections, Career Action Center, and Youth One Stop – had accepted an invitation from ServiceMaster Cleaning and Restoration by NEST to learn more about employment opportunities the locally owned company offered.
Participants sat down at tables set with application packets and soot sponges and were treated to snacks and candy. The franchise owner, Charles Beverly (or Chuck as he introduced himself), began by clicking through a slideshow of photos from jobs ranging from cleaning up sewage from a home’s basement, to bulging ceiling tiles barely holding back a watery deluge.
Eyes were round with shock and fascination.
“Ok,” Chuck finished. “Pick up your soot sponges and follow me.”
The group was shown into another part of the warehouse where a soot-streaked water heater and an assortment of rugs were lying in a puddle of water.
With a casual gesture to the water heater, Chuck invited the participants to “go ahead and sponge off the soot.”
A few young men shuffled forward, unconvinced, but when they applied the sponge to the dark marks, they disappeared. A specialized vacuum made short work of the waterlogged rugs, much to the participants’ delight.
Thanks to the staff at ServiceMaster Cleaning and Restoration by NEST, participants recognized a solid career pathway. Many lined up to personally hand Chuck completed applications and shake his hand.
Case managers and mentors looked on with delight; it’s gratifying to connect people looking for fulfilling work with a local business committed to fostering and developing a high quality workforce.