America's military is certainly visible in the news lately, but what happens behind the headlines when those serving their country come home to join the ranks of veterans? Many will need jobs, training, and time to heal.
Clackamas County is home to over 37,000 veterans, and yet many may not know about services that can help them find jobs, acquire skills and education, plan a career, and provide information about benefits. That's why Community Solutions for Clackamas County applied for, and got, one of only two Department of Labor (DOL) grants offered nationally for marketing and outreach (the State of Massachusetts got the other). The purpose of Clackamas County's grant is to market workforce services to job-seeking veterans and employers interested in hiring them.
Community Solutions for Clackamas County (CSCC) is a workforce service provider that collaborates with other partners in Clackamas County to offer services through their One-Stop Resource Center in Oregon City. Veteran representatives are stationed at the center to help veterans find the resources they need to be successful and return to work.
The DOL grant supplies more than $300,000 to fund a media campaign highlighting the services of the veterans' representatives in Clackamas County. It piggy-backs a national effort by the President's National Hire Veterans Committee within the Department of Labor to return veterans to work. So far the campaign features transit advertising, banners, outdoor advertising, and public service announcements from Governor Ted Kulongoski and other public officials.
According to Clackamas Solutions for Clackamas County Director Maureen Thompson, the successful grant application was the result all workforce partners, including labor, working together for a great cause - our veterans.
Last year alone 1500 veterans visited the one stop, 858 veterans were placed in jobs at an average wage of $11.97 an hour, and 55 employers listed openings as a direct result of the marketing efforts. Figures for this year, starting in July, show that results are on track to surpass last year's.