The services hub provides employment resources to the residents of Ocean View-Merced Heights-Ingleside.
From basic resume help to training certification programs, residents of the Ocean View-Merced Heights-Ingleside neighborhood have a dedicated one-stop shop to meet their employment needs.
The OMI Job Center, located on the 200 block of Broad Street, provides a variety of employment services along with housing resources as well. The center is an offshoot from Inner City Youth, a nonprofit organization that has been providing enrichment services for youth for decades. With funding from the San Francisco Office of Economic Workforce Development through District 11 Supervisor Safai, Inner City Youth opened the center in September 2019.
Avei St. Pierre, the job center’s manager and associate director of Inner City Youth, said the biggest thing they do is have an open door for everybody while making sure no one slips through the cracks.
“Even though we are a job center, we're a connector,” St. Pierre said. “A lot of people, at least the people in this community, don't have access to the resources in the city or they don't know about the resources in the city so they come in here for a job but actually leave with resources.”
The center currently has nine people on staff and continuously expands and adjusts its offerings.
“With such a small staff, we're able to accomplish a lot,” St. Pierre said. “We put on job fairs. We help with community events, especially in the fall. When one starts coming up, we'll help with national night out with backpack giveaways. We'll do the turkey giveaways. We'll either help with toy drives or help also bring toys to the community and that's just like some of the community work that we do.”
The center has free resources for job hunters along with a business center with phones, computers, printers and fax machines. But they offer more than just job placement. They help with career development.
“We do help with employment but in case they want to dig into a career, we also have career advising as well,” St. Pierre said.
The OMI Job Center currently offers security guard card and janitorial certifications. They are also looking into setting up a forklift certification program later this year.
“We helped somebody that was going to do a Bay Area Medical Academy and [helped] with CPR classes,” St. Pierre said.
They also work with younger clients to set them up for success. One of their newer programs is a beauty academy for women between 16 to 24 years old.
The OMI Job Center carefully considers the needs of the community before adopting new programs and resources. They do this through in-person surveys and social media.
On the first Wednesday of every month, the center holds OMI Wednesdays where residents can visit and take a survey to guide future offerings. They also have Workforce Thursdays where people can drop in, get resume help, interview preparation assistance, sign up for their classes and apply for jobs.
St. Pierre said surveys showed that the community wanted more assistance for housing resources and trade programs.
They responded by adding networking with employers that will give their clients living wages and working with clients to get in with employers that will hire them once their certifications are complete.
The center is increasings its presence on TikTok and Instagram to solicit feedback and share resources from community partners, networks and city providers.
They plan to implement themed days such as Motivational Monday Tips, Training Tuesdays and Reel Wednesdays in order to promote an open communication of questions, advice and more to the community.
Some of the organization’s clients have come back to work at the center.
Damina Victoria grew up going to the ICY and is now an education employment specialist. She credits them with helping her every step of the way.
“It's just kind of funny to be doing the same thing that I was a participant in,” Victoria said.
Victoria also said the center’s clients are always appreciative of any support they receive even if it’s the smallest of things like making copies.
OMI Job Center
Address: 200 Broad St.
Hours: Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Phone: (415) 715-8630Website: Inner City Youth
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