Access II News:
Submitted by: Heather Swymeler Access II Executive Director www.accessii.org
Access II has chosen to target developing social and "soft" skills with our youth participating in our Show Me Careers grant. The Independent Living Specialist with this grant, Georgia Jackson and Licha Kelley-King have developed three, six session modules to present in participating schools in our catchment area. These modules, Self-Determination, Leadership and Employment focus on a variety of social and soft skills needed to be successful in getting and keeping employment.
The weekly sessions include topics such as: attitude (this is the one thing we control!), working as a team, how to lead a group, communication with peers and those in authority, knowing your rights, problem solving, phone skills and appropriate workplace behavior among many others. The sessions are 45 minutes each and include an activity as well as a teaching period with time for discussion. The goal is to assist youth in being confident in themselves and their abilities.
Our first sessions start next week in one of our rural schools. This community is assisting Access II to reach out to older youth to present these modules in the evening. It is critical for parents and support persons to be involved in the transition process to employment. It is an exciting time for us!
The Show Me Careers grant funds will enable Access II to offer financial assistance for training time to area businesses once the youth are prepared to enter employment. Business partners are critical to the equation of developing needed character skills with participants. Their suggestions and encouragement to Access II and participating youth is invaluable.