TEACH program helps Rescue Mission residents develop marketable skills

TEACH program helps Rescue Mission residents develop marketable skills

Wednesday, December 22 By Ellen Stoolmacher SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

The Rescue Mission has implemented several job-readiness programs that provide its residents with training to help them remake and reshape their lives. The mission's TEACH program helps residents develop marketable skills for future employment.

The TEACH program offers a comprehensive adult education program that provides GED preparation, basic literacy tutoring, reading and writing skills development, computer education, job-search assistance and parenting classes.

TEACH provides classroom instruction as well as one-on-one tutoring, which is led by volunteers. Dedicated volunteers, like retired teacher Frank Carroll, work with residents to develop basic math and language-arts skills to gain their GED and enhance their opportunity for employment. Four residents have taken the GED test in the past six months. One resident passed all five sections to obtain his GED, and three passed four of the five sections and will re-take the one section they didn't pass.

This past year, the TEACH program expanded its offerings to include job placement. This program assists residents with resumé development and interview preparation. Residents often participate in role-playing activities.

"The program's mock interview prepared me extremely well for my successful interview with Dick's Sporting Goods," said Zane Gaines, a resident of the Rescue Mission. "The practice questions were just like the ones I was asked in my interview."

Since January, 28 residents have secured entry-level positions with career potential.

The TEACH program thrives because of the time and dedication of its volunteers, many of whom are students at Princeton University.

"The program would not be viable without our volunteers," said Sheila Scott, former coordinator of the program. "They are the life blood of the program. The results of the program are fantastic and I only see more success stories to come."

"We are always looking for new volunteers," said Ida Malloy, vocational and life skills counselor at the Rescue Mission of Trenton. "Individuals with good communications skills, a genuine interest in people and patience make outstanding tutors. We are especially in need of volunteers with computer expertise, but we are also looking for individuals with expertise in a wide range of fields to come in to make presentations or lead small group discussions."

The TEACH Center is located at 98 Carroll St. in Trenton. If you are interested in volunteering, call Malloy at (609) 695-1436, ext. 112.

Funds from this year's Holiday Appeal will be used to support the Rescue Mission of Trenton's broad range of programs for the homeless, the hungry, the transient and the addicted.

The Rose and Louis H. Linowitz Charitable Foundation, a longtime supporter of The Times Holiday Appeal, has pledged to match the next $5,000 raised by this year's campaign, challenging Times readers and area organizations to be generous this holiday season.

To make a donation in support of the Rescue Mission of Trenton, please make your check payable to The Times Holiday Appeal and mail it to Times Charities Inc., P.O. Box 416045, Boston, MA 02241-6045.

Donations to The Times Holiday Appeal will go directly to the designated nonprofit organization without the deduction of overhead expenses.

All gifts will be acknowledged in The Times. Anonymity will be granted if requested.

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98 Carroll Street, P.O. Box 790 * Trenton, NJ 08605-0790