County libraries open early for job seekers

April 28, 2009

By Chantelle Lusebrink

The King County Library System is tackling some big issues for one week by opening an hour early to help residents in search of jobs or unemployment resources, from May 1-8.“Really, it is for anyone that has run into trouble with this hard economic time,” said Julie Williams, the system’s community relations and marketing director. “We can help get them started.” 

The program, Look to Your Library, has four unique categories for people facing economic hardship or who find themselves in the midst of a job search — just laid off, searching for a job, struggling small business and bills piling up. 

“Our library system has been amazingly supported by our community for a long time,” Williams said. “When we noticed a lot of people coming in and looking for assistance, we asked, ‘How can we help?’

“We have four stations where people can come in and get hands-on assistance with whatever they need,” she added. 

Each of the four categories is featured in one place on the system’s Web site, with clickable links to books, library databases and resource lists of organizations that can help residents.

It’s something the library hasn’t done before, said Marsha Iverson, media relations coordinator for the system. 

Each of the categories links you with tools, assistance programs and tips you need to get started. 

“If someone needs hands-on experience with writing a résumé, we have a database for that called Resume Builder,” she added. “If someone needs a computer and is not sure where to start searching for a job, we can point them to those areas. Or, if someone has been laid-off and needs to apply for assistance, we can point them in the right direction.”

Librarians will also host special seminars and tutorials throughout the week. The tutorials and seminars will give residents one-on-one help using the site or databases at the library, finding resources in the community and some will also feature guest speakers from area organizations. 

For instance, the Issaquah Library will host a retraining and tuition help seminar at 9 a.m. May 1 and a credit management seminar at 9 a.m. May 4. 

For a complete list of events, search your library’s schedule at the program’s Web site.

“We have so much that can enhance the professional lives, personal lives, and programs and classes that are relevant to adults,” Williams said. “We hope to open a few eyes to how relevant the library is, no matter what age they are.”

Reach Reporter Chantelle Lusebrink at 392-6434, ext 241, or clusebrink@isspress.com.  Comment on this story at www.issaquahpress.com.

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