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  • Writer's pictureEmployment Connection

September at Employment Connection

We've got lots of updates for you this month! Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn for all of the latest info on our programs and events. And if you're not already receiving our monthly newsletter in your inbox, click here to sign up.

Here's just some of what Employment Connection has been up to in September.


Strengthening Community Partnerships

Our CEO Sal Martinez recently had the opportunity to emcee award celebrations sponsored by both Park Central Development and the Community Builders Network in the month of September.

Employment Connection has forged a strategic relationship with both organizations which has enabled us to serve additional clients in our service area. We value our partnerships with these outstanding organizations and their members and look forward to working with them at an even higher level in the near future!


Senior Services with Dream Builders 4 Equity

We are excited to announce a new partnership with Dream Builders 4 Equity which has enabled us to provide free exterior maintenance services for over 60 seniors in various neighborhoods in the City of St. Louis. These services include mowing, trimming, exterior hauling and snow removal this Winter. These services have been made possible through the generosity of the St. Louis City Senior Fund and the RRF Foundation for Aging. This represents an extension of our existing partnership with DB4E, as they have previously engaged us to expose their students to our World of Work (WOW) curriculum. We also recognized the co-founders of Dream Builders 4 Equity (Neal Richardson and Michael Woods) at our annual luncheon in 2019! Keep up the great work DB4E!


BJC Training Program

We are excited to announce our new partnership with BJC HealthCare which has enabled us to launch a new paid training program for our clients that are interested in careers in the healthcare industry. This special 12-week initiative will prepare individuals to serve as Patient Access Representatives at BJC member hospitals throughout the region.

This new program was the brainchild of Dr. Jason Purnell who serves as the Vice-President of Community Health Improvement at BJC HealthCare. Dr. Purnell contacted our CEO Sal Martinez late last year and expressed an interest in partnering with Employment Connection to expose our clients to these rewarding positions.

Through the hard work of BJC officials including Tracy Berry, Vice-President and Chief Revenue Officer of BJC, Carson Spaete, former Vice-President-Patient Access, and Anna Lisa Baguio, Supervisor-Patient Access, the training program started earlier this month! Kudos also to Team EC staff members David Kessel, Lisa Cross Shelton, and Michael McCoy for their hard work in ensuring the success of our initial cohort!


Healthy Blue Grant

Employment Connection received $50,000 from Healthy Blue Missouri to support their workforce development programs which will provide job skills training, employment supplies including clothing, transportation assistance to and from job locations, housing and utility support for those seeking employment as well as assisting families with childcare costs.

“We are very fortunate to be able to serve our clients through this partnership with Healthy Blue,” said Sal Martinez, CEO of Employment Connection. “Many of our clients want to work, but they can’t find jobs because of underlying issues they may have. Through this partnership with Healthy Blue, Employment Connection will be able to assist more clients in overcoming their underlying issues that are keeping them from finding living wage work.”

“We know each individual faces a unique set of challenges and has their own path toward achieving self-sufficiency and career goals,” said Jeff Davis, Healthy Blue President. “By addressing the social drivers of health, we can improve economic opportunities for local Missourians seeking employment through education access, job training and skills development, housing support, and additional resources to encourage personal health and wellness. Healthy Blue remains committed to providing innovative tools by connecting people with resources to overcome barriers and gain meaningful and lasting employment.”

Pictured are Employment Connection team members Umama Khenissi, Shantel Towns, Calvin Burks, Henry Thompson, Sal Martinez, Ravi Rao, and Healthy Blue representatives Natalie Redmond and Meredith Childs.


A Gift from Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner

Team EC would like to give a special thanks to Attorney Allison Price for entering us in a special charity focused drawing at her law firm, Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. Luckily we were selected for a $750 gift! Allison has previously established herself as a supporter of our agency through her financial support of our Giving Tuesday, Give STL Day and Trivia Night events. Thanks again for your continued support Allison!


Hispanic Heritage Month

Employment Connection is celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month, September 15th through October 15th. We’ve featured a number of profiles of Hispanic difference makers, which you can find on our Facebook and Instagram pages.

So far we've featured Karisa Gilman-Hernandez of Dutchtown South Community Corporation, Nikki Martinez of the St. Louis Community Foundation, Martin Casas of Apotheosis Comics, Daniela Velázquez of FleishmanHillard, Karlos Ramirez of Midwest BankCentre, and Jorge Riopedre of Delmar Divine. We thank these individuals and the entire Hispanic community of St. Louis for their outstanding contributions to our culture.

Make sure to follow our Facebook page for more profiles and celebration of Hispanic culture throughout the rest of Hispanic Heritage Month.


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