A Thorold Job Fair, featuring 14 employers who are ready to recruit employees, is being held at Prince of Wales School from 9 a.m. till noon on Saturday, Oct. 19.
A partnership between the Pine Plaza YMCA Employment Center and Terence Schilstra of the Village Church, Schilstra told the Thorold News, “The idea for the job fair came out of our One Thorold meetings. I reached out to them after they presented at one of our gatherings.”
OneThorold is a volunteer initiative whose goal is to enhance Thorold, and includes members from local churches, community groups, business owners, city officials, and individuals.
“Terence and the YMCA had a meeting in the early launching days of the office,” explained YMCA employment coordinator Nikki Anderson. “Through this meeting, it was recognized that both parties had much to offer each other and there was strength in working together.”
“Unlike traditional multi-employer job fairs that have larger groups of job seekers moving around the venue,” she pointed out, “this particular YMCA job fair will have a more focused approach, allowing both job seeker and employer more time to interact and converse about openings and skills sets required.”
Anderson said that 14 employers registered to date, adding that there is “room for a couple more.”
Some of the employers at the Job Fair include 43 Group (Johnny Rocco's, Mick and Angelo’s, Crabby Joes, Stone Mill Inn); 7/11; Accenture; CBI Home Health Care; Thorold Foodland; and Henry Schein, a worldwide distributor of medical and dental supplies, including vaccines, pharmaceutical products, financial services and equipment.
Other employers who are interested in participating can call Nikki Anderson at 905-684-3500.
“Job seekers should come prepared with their resume, appropriate attire, and a positive attitude,” she advised. “While attending job fairs, it is important to be enthusiastic and patient as the crowd can get quite large. Most importantly, participants should research the employers that are in attendance so they can spend the time talking to the employers that most align with their employment goals. Participants are invited to visit our site at 9 Pine Street North prior to the event for more in-depth assistance.”
While the Employment Center’s “focus is to meet the need no matter the season/month, October can be a difficult recruiting month for employers," she told the Thorold News, “as they begin to compete with other labour markets recruiting for the busy upcoming holiday season. It just seemed like a good time to support, and the employer need was there.”
With locations in St. Catharines, Niagara Falls and Thorold, the Thorold site was launched in 2017.
“The YMCA of Niagara Employment and Immigrant Services provide assistance to 5,000-plus individuals annually,” she said. “In the past six months, the YMCA has supported more than 400 job seekers, with more than 175 requesting focused coaching from an employment coach in the Thorold office to advance themselves on the continuum to securing employment.”
Of those clients who have completed their coaching sessions, 120 have secured employment, the majority of which were full-time positions; an employment outcome rate of 82 per cent, she noted.
“At the end of our second quarter we are reporting an 85 per cent match success rate in this local office. The dollars for supporting this component to our services are limited so we work very closely with both employer and potential employee to ensure greatest impact.”
She added that “100 per cent of the employers who have accessed our services have stated they would recommend us to other businesses.”
In addition to the YMCA office, Schilstra said that the Thorold Library and Senior’s Center also offer free help with online job applications.