Working Wardrobes Launches Operation Employment to Help Veterans

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Scholarship program funds career assistance training programs for local veterans.

The employment for our community’s veterans is dire. The VetNet program is critically important when it comes to helping Orange County veterans transition to civilian life and ultimately, to help them find jobs to support themselves and their families.

Working Wardrobes (http://www.workingwardrobes.org/), an Orange County, California nonprofit that helps people overcoming difficult challenges find meaningful employment and achieve self-sufficiency, today announced the launch of Operation Employment, a scholarship program that funds a full suite of career training programs for veterans. These career training services are part of Working Wardrobes VetNet – a safety net for veterans that provides a holistic approach to job training and placement, housing referrals, and other supportive services – and has assisted over 1,500 veteran clients in just three short years.

Hundreds of deserving veterans are currently waiting to receive valuable VetNet training (http://www.workingwardrobes.org/job-seekers/vetnet/), but according to Working Wardrobes, resources are limited and the organization lacks the funds to provide that training. Operation Employment actively seeks the aid of donors and corporate partners to assist the nonprofit in raising $100,000 by the end of 2015, and will actively solicit funds well into 2016 to serve hundreds more veterans with the assistance they need to find jobs with dignity.

Consider these facts:

70% of Service Members leave the military without a job and a third without permanent housing identified (1)
Among those who do have jobs, 76% of post 9/11 veterans working full time earn below the state median of $67,000 (1)
Soldiers who enlisted out of high school may have more difficulty in finding employment (2)
Employment can help a veteran reframe negative thoughts by demonstrating competence, providing meaning to life and social support. (2)
Two-thirds of unemployed veterans are between the ages of 35 and 64, and many face training deficits and basics skills (3) such as resume writing.

“The employment for our community’s veterans is particularly dire,” said Jerri Rosen, founder and CEO of Working Wardrobes. Our VetNet program is critically important when it comes to helping Orange County veterans transition to civilian life and ultimately, to help them find jobs to support themselves and their families.”

The Working Wardrobes VetNet program provides veterans with training that is essential to finding employment, offering an array of services including case management, career readiness training, life skills and goal-setting workshops, career coaching, presentation skills, job placement, image workshops, professional wardrobe and grooming services, and much more. According to Rosen, when the transition assistance and the proper skills training are coupled with military skills these veterans already possess - such as mission focus, discipline, teamwork and integrity - they can become tremendous assets to companies in the private sector.

The organization says that in exchange for a scholarship investment, donors and corporate partners will receive personal updates on each client they sponsor in the form of handwritten letters from veteran clients. In addition, donors will be invited to attend VetNet graduations and other special events, but most important of all, they will have the knowledge that they have helped a deserving veteran, and by extension, the community as a whole.

To donate, to learn more, or to get involved, contact Working Wardrobes at (714) 210-2460 or visit: http://www.VetNetOperationEmployment.org.

(1) “The State of the American Veteran: The Orange County Veterans Study.” USC School of Social Work, Copyright © 2015: http://www.oc-cf.org/document.doc?id=1410

(2) “Veterans Bring Key Skill Assets to the Civilian Workforce.” Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Inc. © 2015: http://www.siop.org/Media/News/veterans.aspx

(3)“Getting Veterans Back to Work,” National Review. July 7, 2011: http://www.nationalreview.com/article/271301/getting-veterans-back-work-rep-jeff-miller

About Working Wardrobes
Working Wardrobes is an independent nonprofit organization that has changed over 80,000 lives in the last 25 years. And the journey continues because at Working Wardrobes we do everything in our power to help men, women, veterans and young adults overcome difficult challenges, so they can achieve the dignity of work. Working Wardrobes stands for: Empowerment. Employment. Dignity.

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Jennifer Lange
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