BREVARD COUNTY — While most residents are enjoying a low unemployment rate in the county, finding a means to earn money can still be difficult for those recovering from substance use.
CareerSource Brevard is offering a helping hand to individuals and their families through a new grant funded program called Brevard Recovery Works.
“Brevard Recovery Works is a very unique opportunity for us,” said Wendi Jo Bost, program coordinator for CareerSource Brevard. “This gives us an added layer of funding to help individuals who have been impacted by the opioid crisis and substance use.”
Career counselors and job developers are available to work with individuals in recovery, in addition to their family members.
It’s also important to CareerSource Brevard to lend support services, not just through interview practice and resume writing, but once someone has landed a job.
“The other end is, you may need some help once you get on the job and you have stress and you have money in your pocket,” Mrs. Bost said. “How are you going to handle things and how are you going to prioritize?”
CareerSource Brevard has partnered with a local agency to provide classes specifically designed for this population. A career counselor is also on hand to help those in transition whether coming out of welfare or going back to work.
According to Mrs. Bost, the ultimate goal CareerSource is trying to achieve is to help educate individuals, their family and the community about these values.
“I think there’s a preconceived notion that when you see someone who’s really down-and-out and maybe on the streets and the paramedics are coming, that those are people suffering from addiction,” Mrs. Bost said.
“As I’ve worked in the community and joined forces with local agencies and professionals, for many people it was a surgery, it was an accident,” she continued, “and that is what created the addiction that spiraled their life down. They really have marketable skills but they’ve just kind of fallen off their way.”
The other side of the grant gives CareerSource Brevard the ability to make an impact on the humanitarian crisis. The organization now has the means to put an individual to work for up to a year with a government or nonprofit-type agency to serve that impacted population, Mrs. Bost said.
“Hopefully that turns into a job but it’s possible that it could lead to them making contacts to get them the employment that they need,” she added.
One such job that CareerSource Brevard is looking to fill is a partnership with Eckerd Connects as a community outreach specialist to assist with the Opioid Task Force.
CareerSource Brevard is federally funded through the U.S. Department of Labor workforce system that provides free training, workshops and services for people looking to return to (or to find) work.
From resume writing to preparing for interviews, CareerSource Brevard is able to bridge the gap between inexperienced and experienced workers.
CareerSource Brevard is also able to offer work experience programs and to pay for two-year degrees, nursing degrees and credentials - whatever would help someone improve their resume, according to Don Lusk, vice president of operations.
For more information, visit www.careersourcebrevard.com.