Champaign County teens and young adults have a local resource for helping them overcome barriers to starting careers and becoming self-sufficient.
The statewide Comprehensive Case Management and Employment Program (CCMEP), offered locally by OhioMeansJobs Champaign County (OMJCC), helps clients, ages 14-24, get the education, training and additional support they need to enter the workforce and break free of the poverty cycle, explains Beth McFann, CCMEP case manager and career coach at OMJCC, which is located in Suite J100 of the Champaign County Community Center, 1512 U.S. 68, Urbana.
OMJCC is part of the Champaign County Department of Job and Family Services (CCDJFS).
“Some of the young people I serve have a hard time seeing beyond their current situation.,” McFann says. “So, I help them discover the career and training options available to them. I help get them in the mindset to plan for their future.”
Amy Sherman, OMJCC workforce supervisor, adds, “Our goal is to reach teens and young adults, to address their barriers in life when they’re still young, so they can live the rest of their lives self-sufficiently and not have to rely on assistance.”
“Every person has different needs,” McFann says.
CCMEP services include:
-Career and goal planning, including help with preparing a resume and searching for jobs
-Paid work experience, in which the CCMEP program pays the client’s wages for a trial period, to give the client experience and the employer an opportunity to review their work before hiring them
-Payment of training and education costs, up to a two-year associate degree, and including short-term training for specific skills and certifications needed to begin a career.
-Financial assistance for transportation and childcare, which McFann says are “two of the biggest barriers to employment in our area”
-Help arranging internships with employers
-Help with tutoring to complete high school or to earn a GED
Stacy Cox, director of CCDJFS/OMJCC, recommends anyone working with youth to contact OMJCC to learn more about CCMEP, so they can refer people they know who could benefit from the program. For information on CCMEP, call Beth McFann, at 937-484-1500, ext. 2701, or the OMJCC, at 937-484-1581.