PHOENIX — For over two decades, a privately funded non-profit has been a place where hope is born and second chances at a successful life is nearly an every-day occurrence.
“We don’t just give them hope, we give them excitement and confidence,” said Candace Sherwood of St. Joseph the Worker. “They stand a little straighter and walk a little taller.”
The organization was started in 1988 by Father Michael Baxter of Andre House of Hospitality, a shelter and soup line. According to their website, Baxter founded St. Joseph the Worker after homeless individuals receiving a free evening meal voiced their frustrations regarding the lack of basic employment resources.
Homeless, low-income and disadvantaged individuals are given a hand-up, am opportunity to become self-sufficient with the proper resources to help them achieve the goal of finding a job with a good wage and becoming, once again, a productive member of society.
“I lost my job, was laid off and ended up here,” said Chris Waddell, one of St. Joseph’s success stories.
Waddell sought help at Central Arizona Shelter Service, a homeless shelter in downtown Phoenix. It was there, where he first heard of St. Joseph the Worker and the type of assistance they provide.
The services they offer include specialized job development, job search resources — including transportation, clothing, personal hygiene products, their own voicemail and an address. Individuals can take workshops to sharpen interviewing skills, personal presentation techniques and communication and proper workplace etiquette and much more.
“I thank them every day,” said Waddell. “I don’t know where I’d be without them.”
Currently, the organization is expanding, thanks to generous support from the community. During the first four months of this fiscal year, St. Joseph the Worker has helped 919 people go back to work, an average of 230 monthly. The starting hourly wage for these individuals was $9.44 an hour, with more than half getting health benefits.
St. Joseph the Worker continues to make a huge difference one job at a time, but its success is shared.
“We can provide the hands-on direct resources, and the community says, ‘We believe in what you’re doing,’ and they help us make it possible,” said Sherwood.
- Stretches and exercises for carpal tunnel syndrome
- The best Major League ballparks have their own personality
- Comparing the best regular seasons: The '96 Bulls and '16 Warriors
- 3 Arizona road trips and the vehicles to get you there
- Colon cancer is preventable. Check these signs and symptoms to stay healthy.
- 6 of the biggest skin cancer myths
- Affordable small home makeover ideas
- Locals helping locals: 6 success stories you need to know about
- Sunscreen facts that could save your life
- 6 energy saving hacks for your home
- 5 tips for choosing a company to end your timeshare
- Overlooked water tips to save you money
- 5 of the most adored gentlemen in professional sports today
- The real danger of sitting at your desk
- Most surprising NBA playoff performances of the last 40 years
- 11 classic baseball movies you must see again
- Finally getting rid of fat: 3 methods that actually work
- 4 reasons cancer survivors should focus on food
- 5 spring cleaning spots everyone forgets
- 5 reasons to look forward to watching the D-backs this season
- Common virus attributed to spike in head and neck cancers
- 5 signs it’s time to end your timeshare ownership
- 3 most overlooked ways to keep your home healthy
- 6 ways the air in your home could be making you sick
- CrossFit dangers: 5 common injuries and how to deal with them
- Today's radiation treatments offer better success, fewer side effects
- Tips to make watching TV on the patio even better
- What really happens when you donate to a community college?
- Sun and skin cancer: Separating fact from fiction
- 5 critical lifestyle changes for a healthy colon