If you’re looking for work, WorkSource Coastal is here to work for you.
That was a message Friday from Mike Tucker, executive director of WorkSource Coastal, as he outlined the agency’s mission for workforce development and economic growth at a ribbon cutting of WorkSource Coastal’s newly opened Hinesville office.
The agency, which serves 10 surrounding counties including Liberty, Long, Bryan and McIntosh, is at 140 MLK Jr. Drive.
“We help people find jobs, connect to job training, help employers find qualified talent,” Tuckers said. “We’re here to solve folks’ problems, find solutions and provide resources. Anyone can come here, they can use the other side of the center and look for jobs, get some career advice, look at labor market information, look at what’s in demand and what are growing job fields.”
WorkSource is federally funded through the state of Georgia.
The Department of Labor and WorkSource are similar in services such as resume building, finding jobs, workshops and career advice.
Megan Earle, WorkSource Coastal career development specialist, said the difference is the grant allows WorkSource to provide more customized services, including on-job training, tuition expenses for classes and paid work experience.
The paid work experience program means the person is an employee of WorkSource and works at business to gain experience in that career field, Earle said.
It’s like a paid internship but WorkSource pays the employee, hopefully resulting in that person getting hired at that business.
At the ribbon cutting, Tucker said the organization is here to serve and WorkSource has already gotten its feet wet locally with its involvement in Hinesville’s Summer Youth Enhancement Program.
Hinesville Mayor Allen Brown said the agency’s help was instrumental.
“We’ve had the pleasure that the city of Hinesville has already worked with your organization,” Brown said. “We’ve been waiting to have a summer youth program for a while and all of the council members, and myself, are very passionate about it and we did have it for the first time. We could not have done it without this organization. We didn’t have the money. They’ve helped make that happen and we’re especially appreciative.”
WorkSource funded a program for 30 teens between the ages of 14 and 18 to work at local businesses and develop life skills over the course of four weeks. The program was funded for $16,000.
Liberty County Commission Chairman Donald Lovette said WorkSource will help the county accomplish its goal of increasing productivity and giving residents more opportunity.
He said initial talks with WorkSource started in 2014 and he was happy about the grand opening, saying it made him “Liberty County proud.”
Michelle Ricketson, executive director of the Hinesville Downtown Development Authority, thanked WorkSource for locating in downtown Hinesville.
“Opening more businesses ties to your clients in giving them jobs,” Ricketson said. “This is an example of how a building that wasn’t move-in ready became move-in ready because of investment and the belief in downtown.”
Ricketson also complimented the staff on the “funky mid-century” look of the office.
Tucker said the staff wanted the office to have a relaxed atmosphere, where people felt comfortable and invited. He said it feels like a coffee shop.
WorkSource Coastal is housed in a renovated 1960s building and features blue and green tones with an exposed ceiling.
Paul Teague vice chairman of the Coastal Workforce Development Board, was happy to have a location in Hinesville.
“What is unique about this center is its ability to reach military veterans transitioning to help them use those skills they have, to be able to find civilian workforce opportunities,” Teague said. “So we’re very excited about it and very thankful.”
WorkSource has special services for veterans and veteran spouses.
For more information on the services it offers visit www.worksourcecoastal.org or call the Hinesville job center at 912-332-7908.