Teens in Alachua County are encouraged to participate in workshops that will teach them about leadership and career management.
The workshops will be hosted by LYFEhouse Inc., a nonprofit established in 2017 to enhance the lives of youth and families through personal and professional development. Two of the workshops have already been held, and those remaining will be as follows:
• April 2, 1-2 p.m., session 1 of 2 of “Your Future is Online:Becoming A Smart Influencer.” Register at https://bit.ly/3J6WBti.
• April 9, 1-2 p.m., session 2 of “Your Future is Online: Becoming a Smart Influencer.” Register at https://bit.ly/3HuTQBr.
• April 16, 10 a.m.-noon, session titled “Job Search Strategies.” Registration at https://bit.ly/3grK5s4
• April 23, 11 a.m.-noon, session session 1 of 2 of “Interview Like A Rockstar.
• April 30, 10-11 a.m., session titled “The Resumes that Stand Out” Register at https://bit.ly/3Leingo
• May 7, 11 a.m.-noon, session 2 of “Interview Like A Rock Star.” Register at https://bit.ly/3IT2RFg.
• May 21, 10-11 a.m., session titled “Resumes that Stand Out.” Register at https://bit.ly/3tDtuYl.
LYFEhouse doesn’t have a physical location but often goes out to communities to bring training to where it is needed, as well as host events online, said Keira Simmonds, founder and executive director of LYFEhouse. She said LYFEhouse’s services can be customized for audiences and also provide training, coaching and mastermind events such as brainstorming for community organization.
Job Search After Work is one of LYFEhouse’s programs. It provides low-cost job coaching and professional document writing and review services for individuals who are searching for jobs, want to increase their earning potential and create opportunities for their families The funds generated from this program are plugged right back to fuel LYFEhouse job services.
The spring workshop series is focused on preparing youth for summer jobs. Simmonds said LYFEhouse will be opening nominations for LYFEhouse’s 3rd annual Youth Leadership awards program to mobilize the community to highlight and elevate the positive character traits of Alachua County youth.
Alisha Sirman, a student at LYFEhouse, spoke about the impact the program has had in her life.
“My experience with LYFEhouse was absolutely amazing,” Alisha said. “Before I joined the program I was very worried because I wasn’t sure how everything would work out, but the program was so thoroughly explained and I can tell it was truly cared for by the instructors. Learning about social change was a great learning experience for me and it encouraged me to reach out and get out of my comfort zone and because of that I was able to create something I didn’t think I was capable of doing. LYFEhouse is extremely supportive and very positive. Ever since I was in the program I have been able to open up more and create more ideas I know I can accomplish to my fullest potential.”
LYFEhouse and the Greater Gainesville Chamber are co-leaders in a program called, reThink that focuses on a social change leadership program where Alachua County high school students design their very own community service program.
Ian Fletcher, chief operating officer for the Greater Gainesville Chamber, said in August 2020 the Chamber applied for a grant for the reThink program that was denied. Thus, LYFEhouse and the Chamber collaborated on a reThink pilot program in January 2021 and recruited four 10th graders that were mentored virtually by University of Florida students. Fletcher said out of the four students, two students’ community service projects involved taking care of stray animals in Waldo. One student did a mental health project in Hawthorne and one student planted flowers in the city of Alachua.
Fletcher said the students completed their community service projects and received $200. He said Truist Bank gave the reThink project a $5,000 grant to implement the reThink program in 2022. The project kicked-off several weeks ago with six students (five from public schools and one student from Oak Hall). The students will be mentored by members of the business community.
Fletcher said the Chamber and LYFEhouse partnership is working well. He said LYFEhouse helped research the curriculum, implement and oversee the program with the Chamber.
“Keira took the lead, and is very involved,” Fletcher said. “We want to continue to grow this leadership program to have an opportunity to implement social change.”
To apply to the Job Search After Work or STRIVE programs, visit https://bit./3Lm8lZR or https://bit.ly/3qHTwsI.
This article originally appeared on The Gainesville Sun: training, coaching mastermind brainstorming life coach, reThink.