Fresh Start Women's Foundation in Phoenix, AZ continues to diligently serve the women of Maricopa County with services including counseling, legal services, career services, self-esteem services, mentoring, education and an internet accessible library/e-learning center with 15 public access computers for women.
In 2012, Fresh Start: Received over 26,000 visits (duplicated); Provided services for 4,900 new women (unduplicated); Enhanced the existing library/e-learning center which increased library usage by over 50%; Assisted 495 women in preparing their resumes; Taught 366 women interviewing techniques through workshops and mock interview sessions; Provided career guidance to 381 women including assessments to match the women's strengths with the type of job requires those strengths; Helped 357 women with their job search through a Fresh Start portal in Jobing.com, a continually updated job opportunities book, and instruction about online job searching; Advised and/or connected 303 women with the education needed to find a job in their field of interest; Supplied a professional suit of clothes to 575 women to wear on job interviews; Prepared or assisted preparing court documents for 794 women; and Provided 2,104 hours of guidance and case management by Master-Level Social Workers.
Fresh Start began an On-The-Job Training (OJT) Program using Fresh Start Treasures (a high end, gently used women’s clothing store benefitting the foundation). Two cohorts of 15 women each enrolled in OJT and 82% of them completed the nine-week program. Of the women who completed the program, 78% found jobs very quickly or enrolled in school to further their education. This year, Fresh Start is implementing the program for 40 women throughout the year.
Fresh Start is gearing up for the annual Starting Fresh Back to School Day on June 13th and Family Law Day on May 11th. Starting Fresh is an event for women who want to go back to school. Representatives from Valley schools will be available to answer questions about their schools and discuss how to get enrolled as well as information about how to finance her education. Family Law Day will be a full day of one-on-one sessions with professional attorneys that have donated their time for consultations.
All of the programs offered at Fresh Start are either free of charge or are a nominal $5 fee (with vouchers available as well).
Fresh Start Women's Foundation in Phoenix, AZ continues to diligently serve the women of Maricopa County with services including counseling, legal services, career services, self-esteem services, mentoring and education. The center has been seeing visits from approximately 2,500 women each month.
Fresh Start has embarked on a number of new projects over the past few months. Our On-the-Job Training Program started in July of 2012. A class of 12 women completed 3 full days of leadership and retail training, followed by 10 weeks of training on-the-job at Fresh Start Treasures, our resale boutique. The women learned how to merchandise, price items, use the cash register and how to work with customers. This group graduated in early September and a new class of 12 more women have started their program. These ladies will be assisted by Fresh Start's career coaches in finding a permanent job once they have completed the program. They also received a stipend for their work at Fresh Start Treasures.
Fresh Start is also starting a new pre-school English class at the center on Fridays. The class started on September 28 and runs through December. A retired ESL (English as a Second Language) teacher volunteered to run the class. She will be teaching basic pre-school English skills to a group of 3-4 years olds along with their moms. It is critical to have the moms participate as well, so that they learn along with their children. The children will also be assessed for any special needs they may have and will be assisted in how to navigate those needs through the public school system when they enter.
Fresh Start is also gearing up for our annual Career Fair on October 17th and Family Law Day on October 13. The Career Fair will feature over 20 companies currently recruiting for workers. Typically 200+ women attend the career fair. Family Law Day will be a full day of one-on-one sessions with professional attorneys that have donated their time for consultations.
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