As always, the summer has gone quickly, and we are now approaching Labor Day. While sometimes we think of Labor Day as an opportunity for a long weekend, the purpose of Labor Day is to celebrate the working men and women of our Country.
In honor of Labor Day, I would like to thank all of the hard-working people of Waynedale. I also want to talk with you Waynedale readers about a program we offer at the Wayne Township Trustee’s Office which involves Township Assistance recipients working to give back to the community.
That program is our Workfare program supervised by Ray Navarro. Other employees working with the Workfare program are Johnny Campos and Stan Ostermeyer.
Back in the mid-1800s, able-bodied persons who received Township Assistance worked in the community to give something back. Assistance recipients chopped firewood and worked in the farms and gardens for those unable to do these tasks themselves.
By working in the community, persons receiving assistance were able to accept financial help while maintaining their dignity. This same spirit exists today within the Wayne Township Trustee’s Office.
Today’s Wayne Township clients must become involved in our Workfare program if they are not otherwise employed and are able to work. Through that program, the clients are assigned “workdays,” when they work at various non-profit or governmental agencies. The number of “workdays” assigned to each client depends on the amount of Township Assistance they are receiving.
The Workfare clients provide a variety of services for those agencies. Some of the Workfare participants work in the Wayne Township office, assisting with cleaning, lawn care and other projects which need to be done at our office.
If a client is eligible for Workfare and does not complete the program, that client risks losing his or her Township Assistance. We currently have over forty persons participating in our Workfare Program.
When clients begin with the Workfare program, those clients must go through orientation. At orientation, the clients learn about appropriate dress and conduct when going out on a job.
The Workfare program benefits both the clients and the agencies for which they are working. The agencies get extra help at no cost to them, and the clients learn skills that translate into the client obtaining employment. Some clients have even gotten jobs at agencies where they have been working through Workfare.
I plan to attend both the Waynedale Community Picnic on August 18 and the Elmhurst Neighborhood Association Picnic on August 24. I hope I have an opportunity to meet you at one of these events and talk with you about all the programs and services we offer at the Wayne Township Trustees Office.
Richard A. Stevenson, Sr.
Wayne Township Trustee
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