Jobs for Life program informational meetings scheduled for Thursday

STEUBENVILLE — Urban Mission Ministries will be launching its Jobs for Life program this fall with two informational meetings scheduled for Thursday for potential students and volunteers.

One is at 10 a.m., the other at 5 p.m. at the mission, located at 301 N. Fifth St.

“Jobs for Life is going to be an ongoing program from now, because we believe so passionately in this program,” explained the Rev. Ashley Steele, the mission’s executive director.

It helps prepare area men and women 18 and older for meaningful work through honest relationships, mentoring, work-force development training and an ongoing community of support.

“It’s a national program that we’ve already been trained in it and so has our staff, and it’s an opportunity for folks who are either unemployed or underemployed, working some time but maybe wanting to advance their skills, to be surrounded by a supportive network and then hopefully some other skills that will translate into the job market,” Steele said.

“From a faith foundation, we believe God created us humans to work and to contribute something to society in terms of gifts, and skills and ability, and sometimes, people don’t know maybe what those are, what they possess or sometimes they don’t have the supportive network to help them actually utilize those things,” Steele continued.

“This program is really a ministry,” she said. “We think we’ll have a tremendous impact on not only the folks we currently serve, but just the community as a whole.”

Jobs for Life involves a partnership with volunteers, churches, businesses and other agencies who are helping people get back on their feet, according to Steele, “so it also plays off our idea it takes all of us working together to truly help someone break out of that cycle of poverty.”

The two informational sessions will gauge interest and move from there with an eight-week class intended to start the first of October and continue until around Thanksgiving.

“After that we have a graduation for those who participate, and it is a commitment,” Steele said. “You have to go twice a week for eight weeks to be a part of this. It will be at the mission.”

Key roles needed to make the program a success are:

¯ Church members who commit to relational ministry, helping participants focus on their identity in God, build character and create sustainable community. Church members can volunteer in the class, filling roles such as instructors, mentors and prayer leaders.

¯ Business leaders who use their talents, resources and influence to partner with Jobs for Life and offer job opportunities to program graduates, participate on class panels and share the program with their networks.

¯ Investors who give of their resources to help further the program’s mission. A $50 gift toward Jobs for Life will sponsor one student this year.

¯ Job seekers who are unemployed or underemployed and are searching for a way to provide for themselves and their families.

To sign up for the informational sessions or to support Jobs for Life, call (7400 282-8010 or e-mail Steele at