‘Jobs for Life’ close to graduating first class

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 9 March 2014 at 12:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers – Tim Lindsay, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion, is site leader for the new Jobs for Life program in Orleans County. He discussed the program during a meeting with the Albion Rotary Club last week. Lindsay welcomes mentors and businesses to be part of the program.

ALBION – A group of churches is trying to “flip the list,” and the break the cycle of poverty for local residents.

The churches have formed Hands 4 Hope Orleans and launched a “Jobs for Life” program that is designed to give residents basic job skills, and also connect them to job opportunities and a mentor who will be a source of encouragement. The Rev. Tim Lindsay, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in Albion, is site leader of the program.

“We’re trying to do things that foster independence and help people become self-supporting,” Lindsay told the Albion Rotary Club on Thursday. “We want to put jobs at the top and get people out of the cycle of dependency.”

Hands 4 Hope Orleans started the 16-class program on Jan. 27.  The class meets twice a week at Hoag Library. Local business leaders have volunteered to help lead some of the classes. The first group of five students is scheduled to graduate on March 24.

Lindsay said he has witnessed big changes in the students in about six weeks of classes. They have gained confidence and direction.

He urged the Rotary Club, which includes several local business owners, to consider hiring a Jobs for Life graduate. The first class is expected to include five graduates. Lindsay expects to have additional classes in the future.

Each graduate will receive a certificate and businesses can have faith the students have learned the importance of values, showing up on time, conflict resolution, team work, a positive attitude, taking responsibility and overcoming roadblocks.

“We want this certificate to mean something to employers,” Lindsay said.

Besides Harvest Christian Fellowship, the Oak Orchard Assembly of God, Light of Victory, Albion Free Methodist Church and Alabama Full Gospel are all helping with Jobs for Life. For more information on Hands 4 Hope Orleans, click here.