February 18, 2011
Unemployment remains a grave issue in the United States. Though increases in employment have occurred in some sectors, others are still suffering loss. The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reports unemployment fell by .4% in January 2011 for a total unemployment rate of 9% throughout the country. “Employment rose in manufacturing and in retail trade but was down in construction, in transportation and in warehousing. Employment in most other major industries changed little over the month,” stated the U.S. Department of Labor.
These statements above are not unusual during an economic downturn. They also are not outside of the norm for statistical expectations. What is apparent by reviewing the data is that many Americans are still out of work, and many are now evaluating their current career path.
In fiscal 2010, kiisa corporation, as well as many other American companies, were watching job market uncertainty and questioning how to position themselves within these changing markets. One area of need recognized by kiisa was getting people to understand that re-training in today’s environment is critical to workplace success. Further, kiisa found it essential that unemployed Americans understand that they possess valuable skills, which will transfer to another career. Discovering this, though, takes focus, determination, and education. This is why kiisa chose to launch Life Skills Courses, or skills necessary for successful living.
Understanding this vital workplace need, kiisa wrote a grant, in partnership with the Southeastern Louisiana University’s Division of Extended Studies at the St. Tammany Center. This grant was submitted to the St. Tammany Parish Government’s Health and Human Services Department under the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), which is distributed by the Housing and Urban Development Department (HUD).
In this grant, kiisa and Southeastern outlined the need for two synergetic courses, to be offered at no cost to the community that would address career and personnel training as well as financial fitness. In the first course, participants will learn to hone in on their skill sets and re-position themselves in the workplace. In addition, they will identify new job opportunities, re-write their resumes to poise them for success, and post those resumes to three different job seeking websites. In the second course, participants will be given the tools to become financially fit. They will learn to forecast and budget for an individual or a family; will receive an overview of what a credit score means to financial success, and will be able to define, comprehend, and overcome personal debt.
Today, kiisa has prepared all materials for both courses. The grant, awarded in November 2010, will launch in March 2011 and continue until February 2012. Transportation will not be an issue as GOSTAT, the parish transportation provider, will provide travel for participants in need. Yes, unemployment remains a grave issue in the United States; however, kiisa understands the only resolve lies in education and relationship building between the community and the workplace.
Courtesy of David Kiviaho, kiisa corporation
For more information or to register for the Life Skills Class, please contact:
St. Tammany Center – 985-893-6251
kiisa corporation – 985-326-9334