Jobseekers Pursue Empowerment from Employment at Job Club

Sinaa Watkins, 43, is a single mother of two with a 19-year-old daughter and a seven-year-old son. Currently unemployed and living with her mother, Watkins says a job would allow her to get back on her feet.

“It’s all about supporting family for me,” said Watkins at a recent Job Club in Lennox. “If you’re out there and looking for employment, this is for you,” said Watkins.

The Job Club is a bimonthly job search workshop at the new Lennox Library and Constituent Service Center. Held in the Wiseburn Conference Room, the sessions are free to all community members. The program, powered by Community Career Development, Inc. and the office of Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, offers opportunities for networking, job leads and interview techniques along with a sprinkle of hope. The workshop aims to help those who are underemployed, unemployed or starting in a new career by offering resources and employer referrals as well as job training opportunities.

“A just-trained candidate, is a just right candidate,” said Tony Jaramillo, Program Manager for Community Career Development, Inc., the non-profit, community-based organization that leads the workforce development training for jobseekers.

The unemployment rate in Los Angeles County currently hovers at 8.1 percent, exceeding the state average of 7.4 percent; it is nearly two full points above the national average of 6.2 percent according to the Employment Development Department.

The county lost 57,600 jobs in July, although 69,200 were added over the year with an annual growth rate of 1.7 percent. The jobless rate was down from 10 percent a year ago.

“Meaningful work is important because most folks are looking to sustain a living wage to raise the quality of their life here in Los Angeles,” Jaramillo said. “There is a gap in computer skills necessary to secure the higher wage jobs. There seems to be a divide between those that have the ability to be retrained and those that stand on their laurels,” Jaramillo said.

Curtis Blue, 47, from Los Angeles, is an information technology professional who has been unemployed for two years. He attended the job club for the first time to improve his interview skills and look for work.

Having been out of work for two years, Blue discussed the challenges of staying abreast of quickly changing technology.

“Technology is always changing, so not having the hands on experience is challenging. But I’ve learned that I’m not the only one struggling,” Blue said.

The next Job Club is scheduled for 11 a.m. on September 11 in the Wiseburn Community Room at the Lennox Library and Constituent Service Center located at 4343 Lennox Blvd., Lennox, CA 90304.

lennox_center_jobclubsept2014

Economic and Community Development Plan Moves Forward

Increasing affordable housing and expanding employment opportunities has been a longstanding priority in Los Angeles County, but the elimination of redevelopment agencies in 2011, made it difficult for the county to fund these types of projects.  But the county will soon have a new economic plan to boost jobs, business growth and affordable housing projects.

At its meeting Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors took a major step toward creating an economic plan for the County by setting in motion a Countywide Economic and Community Development Program. The program, championed by Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas, aims to make it easier for small businesses and light manufacturing to operate in the county by expediting the permitting process and waiving associated fees, expanding key trade industries such as aerospace and fashion in the region and streamlining foreign trade.

The program, also calls for the development of a $100-million public/private catalytic development fund that would be used to develop affordable housing and transit oriented development projects in low-income communities.

Before they were dissolved, redevelopment agencies reinvested a portion of tax proceeds into communities to financially support economic development and affordable housing.  The development of a Countywide Economic and Community Development Program is intended to help bridge the financial gap that redevelopment agencies formally fulfilled.

Dodgers Dreamfield Dedicated at Ted Watkins Park

photo
For many children, the baseball diamond is a place to learn sportsmanship, strategy and self-confidence. And this summer, a freshly renovated baseball field has opened in Watts.

“Beautiful baseball diamonds like these create an inspiring platform for our young players to learn about teamwork,” said Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas.

The Dodgers Dreamfield at Ted Watkins Park, a 28-acre park in the heart of South Los Angeles named after the founder of the Watts Labor Community Action Committee in 1995, is the latest of eight fields built with funding from the Dodgers Foundation, LA84 and Los Angeles County Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas. Created in 1998, the Dodgers Foundation provides educational, athletic and recreation opportunities for children in the Los Angeles area, with a special emphasis in helping underserved youth. LA84 was endowed with surplus funds from the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles to serve children through sports. Ted Watkins Park is the eighth partnership in the second district following the renovations of Jesse Owens, Athens, Lennox, Mona and Campanella park fields. Dreaming in the batter’s box is Roosevelt Park, which Supervisor Ridley-Thomas hopes will be completed by the end of August.

“This wonderful addition to the park will make it possible for youngsters in the area to learn and practice their baseball skills under the tutelage of coaches and other caring adults while having fun,” said Patrick Escobar, LA84 Foundation Vice President of Grants & Programs.

As part of the dreamfield renovations, Ted Watkins Park received $156,000 worth of upgrades including new bases, paint, remote controlled solar powered scoreboards, signage, dugout roofs and fresh green grass. These renovations follow an $8.7M renovation completed in 2011 and an additional $1M renovation completed last year.

“We are grateful for this partnership,” said Supervisor Ridley-Thomas. “And we know there will be many more opportunities for us to work together to build more fields of dreams for children and families.”

Interns Wanted at the Broad Art Foundation

The Broad_exterior renderingWhether it’s Jeff Koons’ playful Balloon Dog, the vivid photographs of Cindy Sherman or the tortured canvases of Jean-Michel Basquiat, three lucky people will likely have the opportunity to see these artists’ works up close. The Broad Art Foundation is currently seeking interns for the fall who are passionate about pursuing a career in visual arts or at a museum. The 10-week internship, which runs from September through December, includes a $2,500 stipend and is open to adults, college and graduate students.

Interns will work with staff on the foundation’s latest project, The Broad, a new contemporary art museum currently under construction on Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles, that is scheduled to open next year.

“We have a great opportunity for someone to learn about building a museum – from the ground up in every sense – from building our online collections database to helping to establish the museum’s presence in the community through our marketing department,” Alex Capriotti, director of marketing and communication for the Foundation said.

Interns will be selected based on academic background, skills, interests, and long term goals. As part of the full time internship program, interns will participate in a training program, which will include field trips to museums and galleries in and around Los Angeles.  Interns will work in The Broad’s Art Foundation departments including marketing and communications, collection management, information technology and audience engagement to gain an understanding of how a particular department functions within the context of a museum as well as skills related to a particular department’s activities.

Three Broad internships with stipends are available for the fall. Applications must be received by July 28.

The Broad museum, a 120,000-square-foot project of philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad, will open in 2015 in downtown Los Angeles and will house the Broad collections of contemporary and postwar art.

For more information about The Broad internship program, please click here.

Interns Wanted at The Broad Art Foundation

The Broad_exterior renderingWhether it’s Jeff Koons’ playful Balloon Dog, the vivid photographs of Cindy Sherman or the tortured canvases of Jean-Michel Basquiat, three lucky people will likely have the opportunity to see these artists’ works up close. The Broad Art Foundation is currently seeking interns for the fall who are passionate about pursuing a career in visual arts or at a museum. The 10-week internship, which runs from September through December, includes a $2,500 stipend and is open to adults, college and graduate students.

Interns will work with staff on the foundation’s latest project, The Broad, a new contemporary art museum currently under construction on Grand Avenue in downtown Los Angeles, that is scheduled to open next year.

“We have a great opportunity for someone to learn about building a museum – from the ground up in every sense – from building our online collections database to helping to establish the museum’s presence in the community through our marketing department,” Alex Capriotti, director of marketing and communication for the Foundation said.

Interns will be selected based on academic background, skills, interests, and long term goals. As part of the full time internship program, interns will participate in a training program, which will include field trips to museums and galleries in and around Los Angeles.  Interns will work in The Broad’s Art Foundation departments including marketing and communications, collection management, information technology and audience engagement to gain an understanding of how a particular department functions within the context of a museum as well as skills related to a particular department’s activities.

Three Broad internships with stipends are available for the fall. Applications must be received by July 28.

The Broad museum, a 120,000-square-foot project of philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad, will open in 2015 in downtown Los Angeles and will house the Broad collections of contemporary and postwar art.

For more information about The Broad internship program, please click here.