Saturday, July 6, 2013
A new Prosperity Center at the Goodwill store on Trolley Road is a one-stop shop for people who need help finding a job, sharpening their skills or improving their finances.
Officials from Summerville, Goodwill, Trident United Way, Family Services, Inc., and Dorchester County Adult Education cheered the grand opening of the new center Friday.
The issues of poverty are so great that only by working together can they be addressed, said Chris Kerrigan, CEO of Trident United Way.
This is the second Prosperity Center in the tri-county area. The first was opened almost six months ago in Moncks Corner.
Goodwill has long offered JobLink centers, which offer computers for job searches and resume writing, along with assistance with job applications.
The Prosperity Centers offer a more holistic approach.
The job search function will still be there, of course.
A full-time staffer from Family Services will be on site to offer confidential financial counseling and to offer classes on personal finance, said Jim Hughes, vice president of mission services at Goodwill.
Goodwill has also teamed up with Adult Education to help people update their skills with Work Core Employability Skills training.
By being in one location, Goodwill won’t have to refer people out to so many different locations, Hughes said.
They’ve found that JobLink employees tend to get to know job searchers over time and develop relationships, Hughes said.
He said these relationships will help staff make recommendations about other services the job searchers might use, services the job searchers might not be inclined to request at first meeting.
All services are free, he emphasized.
Goodwill and United Way have planned for this and budgeted for center operations, he said.
“Please come see us, even if you’re just curious,” Hughes said.
“Please feel free to come by and talk to us.”
The center is at 222 Trolley Road.