Top-notch job resource agency enters West Valley

Brent Downs and Pedro Con celebrate the opening of St. Joseph the Worker inside the Maryvale Community Success Center July 8. The center is a partnership among Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc. and agencies supporting the working poor. (Ambria Hammel/CATHOLIC SUN)
Brent Downs and Pedro Con celebrate the opening of St. Joseph the Worker inside the Maryvale Community Success Center July 8. The center is a partnership among Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc. and agencies supporting the working poor. (Ambria Hammel/CATHOLIC SUN)

St. Joseph the Worker once again proved its due diligence in providing paths out of poverty via resources that lead to meaningful employment.

The nonprofit, which has traditionally supported homeless individuals through the job search process, expanded its client base with the grand opening of a brick-and-mortar satellite location at the Maryvale Community Success Center July 8. There, at the northwest corner of 67th Avenue and Indian School, its bilingual employment outreach specialist will serve clients who might have a home, but be unemployed or underemployed.

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St. Joseph the Worker

Provides job readiness workshops and resources for clients actively seeking employment

Office locations:
Human Services Campus, 1125 W. Jackson St.
Maryvale Community Success Center, 6850 W. Indian School Road
Mobile locations in the central, east and north Valley

Info: (602) 417-9854 or www.sjwjobs.org

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The Maryvale area is among the highest rate of Medicaid patients in Arizona, according to Pedro Con, vice president of the multi-family residential arm of Chicanos Por La Causa, Inc., St. Joseph the Worker’s new location sits in the community center anchored by Chicanos Por La Causa, which partnered with the job resource agency for its proven track record.

St. Joseph the Worker supported some 2,700 new hires in the last fiscal year, up from 2,457 the previous year. The upward trend reflects steady growth for St. Joseph the Worker which rolled out a mobile office a year ago and has staffed satellite locations at other agencies and shelters since early 2013.

“Our new satellite location allows us to further strengthen our relationships with local residents and businesses by providing convenient access to our best-in-class employment services,” Brent Downs, executive director of St. Joseph the Worker said in a statement.

More importantly, their new office inside Chicanos Por La Causa’s community success center marks its first West Valley location. It’s another pocket of the Valley where St. Joseph the Worker staff finds they will be addressing generational poverty.

“As St. Joseph the Worker reaches out into the community, we’re trying to identify those spots,” Downs told The Catholic Sun.

Staff is already addressing such poverty in Sunnyslope and Mesa. Clients who walk into the new location will find the same resources as St. Joseph the Worker’s main office on the Human Services Campus and aboard the Mobile Services Unit: job readiness workshops, individual support with resumes, job leads, a computer lab, interview attire and hygiene items. They’ll also find practical support such as bus passes to get to the interview and the first weeks on the job plus gift cards to ensure clients arrive fully equipped with necessary tools and uniform on the first day.

The year-old Maryvale Community Success Center already sees some 1,000 people daily for an array of growing on-site health and social services, said Con with Chicanos Por La Causa. He easily sees St. Joseph the Worker quickly supporting 50-100 clients per week in its infancy.

Alexandra Flores, employment outreach specialist at the new location, is ready to support new clients. She recalled her training at St. Joseph the Worker’s main campus and was inspired each time a client secured employment.

“I want to make a difference in someone else’s life because I know if I make a difference in theirs, they’re going to make a difference in someone else’s,” Flores said.

The Maryvale office will be open mornings Monday through Friday and the early afternoon on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Flores will spend other afternoons connecting with local business leaders and churches to remind them of St. Joseph the Worker’s services and discuss partnerships for donation drives and support.