Job seekers get employment and job training information from the Homeboy Industries booth at the Hollywood WSC Second Chance Career and Resource Fair
The Hollywood WorkSource Center held its Second Chance Career and Resource Fair on May 7, 2019, providing an opportunity for individuals released from prison or with a history of involvement with the justice system to meet with re-entry friendly employers.

Approximately 260 job seekers attended the job fair, where 40 employers were on-hand offering jobs in construction, healthcare, hospitality, retail, transportation, security and other fields.

Long-term North Valley BusinessSource Center client Mariana Ospital at the grand opening of her third business location in Arleta, California
The North Valley BusinessSource Center (BSC), overseen by EWDD partner VEDC, helped long-term client Mariana Ospital obtain several loans over two years to expand her business, Mariana Services, which recently celebrated the grand opening of its third location in Arleta.

Mariana first visited the North Valley BSC in March 2017, after a bank declined to provide a loan she needed to expand her business, which includes tax, insurance, legal, travel and auto registration services, along with immigration consulting and civil marriages.

Mirna Aracely Garcias and her husband outside her business, La Fiesta Party Supplies and Gifts
The West Valley BusinessSource Center (BSC) assisted entrepreneur Mirna Aracely Garcias in securing a $50,000 Small Business Administration loan, helping her business La Fiesta Party Supplies and Gifts overcome cash flow issues and increase sales by 10 percent.

Mirna emigrated from Guatemala to the US in 2000 in search of a better life with hopes of achieving the American Dream. Soon after, she met the man who ultimately became her husband. They decided to open a business in the City of Los Angeles and together, opened a party supply store.

The new Koreatown LAHTA Culinary Training Facility ribbon cutting ceremony
EWDD partner Los Angeles Hospitality Training Academy (LAHTA) celebrated the grand opening of its state-of-the-art Culinary Training Facility with a ribbon cutting ceremony May 7, 2019. EWDD and the City’s Workforce Development Board (WDB) help finance LAHTA programs with grant funding.

The new, fully equipped kitchen facility will allow LAHTA to expand the reach of its programs and provide the most up-to-date, industry-recognized training to a broader and more diverse population due to its centralized location at the heart of Koreatown.

LA:RISE participant Marnella (pictured) gained the skills to advance in her current job and the confidence to  also pursue her dream career
The May 13, 2019, EWDD Updates highlights two LA:RISE (Los Angeles Regional Initiative for Social Enterprise) success stories. The City’s WorkSource Centers and LA:RISE prioritize individuals recently released from prison, the unsheltered or those at risk of homelessness, and youth ages 18-24 who are neither in school or working.

After working in a transitional job at a social enterprise and leveraging training and services from the WorkSource Center, LA:RISE participants are placed at jobs in the private sector, in public-sector jobs in the City of LA, or in vocational training programs.

Fit Culture Pilates (exterior studio front) in San Pedro, California
The Harbor-Watts BusinessSource Center helped entrepreneur Ashley Rios obtain a $128,000 loan from the US Small Business Administration (SBA) to open Fit Culture Pilates in San Pedro, creating three full-time jobs and 15 part-time jobs.

Ashley was referred to the Harbor-Watts BusinessSource by the San Pedro Chamber of Commerce in late 2018 for assistance with funding to start a contemporary Pilates and barre studio.

The South Valley BSC helped long-term client Suzanne Chery establish Love and Kare Home Health, a non-medical home care business
The South Valley BusinessSource Center (BSC) provided long-term assistance to entrepreneur Suzanne Chery, helping her establish Love and Kare Home Health, a home care business. The center has been assisting Suzanne since February 2016 with her other business ventures, including selling Mary Kay Cosmetics and hair extensions.

In 2017, Suzanne approached the South Valley BSC for assistance in establishing a non-medical home care organization business. While Suzanne was studying for her Business Management degree at California State University, Northridge, she started working for an elderly

J Trinidad Vega (pictured) recently started a job at LA's Department of Public Works through the City’s Targeted Local Hire Program
The Hollywood WorkSource Center recently helped J Trinidad Vega get a job as a vocational worker with the City of Los Angeles through the Targeted Local Hire Program (TLHP), which is designed to help under-served and under-employed Angelenos find an alternative pathway to civil service careers at the City.

After working many jobs in labor, security, retail and towing in Los Angeles and Las Vegas, J was struggling to earn enough money to support his family. He often worked more than eight hours a day and still could not afford health insurance due to high costs.

Tyren Brown (pictured) successfully transitioned to civil service status at HCIDLA through the City’s Targeted Local Hire Program
From the moment Tyren Brown started working part-time for the City of Los Angeles, he searched for an opportunity to join the City full-time. Today, Tyren is a full-time Admin Clerk with civil service status, thanks to the Targeted Local Hire Program (TLHP), which is designed to help under-served and under-employed Angelenos find an alternative pathway to civil service careers at the City.

The TLHP placed Tyren at the Los Angeles Housing and Community Investment Department (HCIDLA), where his daily duties include reviewing complaints and scheduling visits so inspectors can check buildings to make sure residents have hot water, electricity and gas, the necessary accommodations to make housing livable, he said.

“My services also provide a contributing factor to making sure that properties stay low income for certain people so that they can afford to stay there,” he said. His efforts work toward “Reducing homelessness, making it to where there are more properties that are affordable for people who don’t make enough.”

Working at the City makes him feel that he is part of a group of people whose lives are dedicated to providing services to local residents.

“It kind of gives me a sense of pride,” Tyren said. “I feel like I now have become an added link in the chain to strengthen that. I feel like my contributions are maybe not as great but they are of some positive nature. It brings me a lot of joy to know that I’m helping some people.”

Before joining the TLHP, Tyren worked part-time at the City for two years as a Special Programs Assistant, where he worked on graffiti removal, waste removal, painting, electrical work and other odd jobs, he said. At age 41, Tyren said he appreciates working in an office environment after years of working outdoors. He looks forward to potential promotions and is appreciative of the opportunities the TLHP has opened for him.

“It’s been an awesome feeling for me,” he said. “I feel like the program is an excellent program. It is definitely helping the community. I hope it stays around to continue helping the community and helping people get into the City who would like to pursue a career with the City of Los Angeles.”

Tyren said he received a lot of guidance toward the TLHP from his former supervisor and others at the (now temporarily closed) Crenshaw WorkSource Center, but it was his persistence that helped him land a job through the TLHP within four months.

“It definitely requires dedication,” he said. “Be persistent, don’t give up. Stay in contact with whoever they appoint you to be in contact with. In my persistence, it led me to get where I am now. It’s a lot of steps and it’s worth it.”

In partnership with the LA City’s Personnel Department, EWDD has processed nearly 8,600 TLHP applicants at nine WorkSource Centers that are approved application sites. Approximately 505 positions have been filled to-date, including clerical, vocational and custodial jobs

Job seekers (left) speak with a potential employer at the Southeast Los Angeles WorkSource Center job fair May 2, 2019
Approximately 150 job seekers attended a job fair hosted May 2, 2019 by the Southeast Los Angeles WorkSource Center, operated by EWDD partner Watts Labor Community Action Committee (WLCAC).

In total, 46 booths set-up at WLCAC’s Phoenix Hall for the job fair, including 35 employers and service providers, some of which were offering positions, said Elton Blake, Executive Director of Employment and Training Services at the Southeast LA WorkSource Center.

Artist rendering of the Creshaw Crossing Mixed-Use Project interior, courtesy of RELM Studios (http://relmstudio.com/work/crenshaw-crossing)
The Vernon-Central/Los Angeles Technical Trade College (LATTC) WorkSource Center, overseen by EWDD partner Coalition for Responsible Community Development (CRCD), will soon be able to provide priority hiring to community members for the proposed Crenshaw Crossing Mixed-Use Project at the intersection of the Los Angeles Country Metro Crenshaw and Expo lines.

The Watt Companies and the West Angeles Community Development Corporation, the developers of the project, selected CRCD to administer the project’s local hire program.

2019 City of Los Angeles Mayor’s Small Business Summit Kick-Off Event on April 29, 2019, at Los Angeles Trade Technical College
The City of Los Angeles Economic and Workforce Development Department’s Economic Development Division (EDD) led EWDD’s efforts to serve as an “Official Partner” of the second annual LA Mayor’s Small Business Summit.

EWDD provided extensive assistance in promotional efforts, sending multiple email blasts to contacts through EWDD’s nine BusinessSource Centers throughout the LA region, including strategically timed posts across @laewdd social media channels. The summit is a multi-faceted, free program with workshops, exhibitors, and hands-on contracting and certification assistance.