An effort by the Rockingham Housing Authority to prepare residents for the workforce through tutoring and job-preparedness services has received zero participation since it began on Jan. 8.
The services are provided by volunteer Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D. members in the computer lab at the Dobbins Heights Community Center from 5 to 7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and are open to the public. Those services include tutoring in the areas of reading, writing, research and math, as well as help with creating a resume, finding a job and filling out job applications.
Dobbins Heights Town Council member Angeline David, who was one of the people responsible for seeking the original grant to bring Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D. to Richmond County, said the tutoring and job training services allow Dobbins Heights residents to have a valuable resource for improving their financial situation in close proximity.
“If they don’t want to come in and take that great opportunity for themselves, it’s sad,” David said. She added that if someone is offering help, assuming they are aware of it, “you should take it.”
Teraefean Goodwin, host site supervisor for Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D., said the members will go door-to-door in the coming weeks to inform residents about the services and encourage them to participate. She said snowy weather over the past few weeks may have been a factor in the slow start to the program.
In addition to the walk-in lab, Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D. will soon begin holding financial literacy training with its “Money Talks … Should I Listen?” classes held at several locations in Richmond County. Classes will begin at the Dobbins Heights Community Center on Feb. 7, at the Housing Authority and Falling Creek Apartments on Feb. 8, and at NC Works on Feb. 12.
The classes will be conducted by Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D. volunteers who have completed the necessary training to be able to teach financial skills including saving, borrowing and managing money.
Goodwin said that because of the negative debt-to-income ratio for Richmond County, there is a significant need for financial literacy training to the general public who may not have had that education growing up.
Next month, Project R.E.B.U.I.L.D. will hold a “vision board” event at Falling Creek Apartments where residents of any age can envision things they want to accomplish in the coming year, posting pictures from magazines onto a poster board to help them visualize achieving those goals.
“We wanted to provide a different way to create a personal view for what they want out of their lives,” Goodwin said.
Reach Gavin Stone at 910-817-2674 or [email protected]