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Experience Works offers help to older workers in tough economic times

In economic recessions, people in the prime of their careers often find few employment opportunities.

There are even fewer opportunities for individuals with obstacles -- lack of experience, training, or education, physical barriers, and age can all be contributing factors to an unsuccessful job search. Fortunately, there's help available.

Experience Works, formerly known as Green Thumb, is a national, nonprofit, community-based organization that helps people who are 55 and older with limited incomes get the training they need to find jobs in their communities.

Experience Works offers programs designed to help mature individuals enter the workforce, secure more challenging positions, move into new career areas, or supplement their incomes. Participants are paid with funds through the Senior Community Service Employment Program while they train temporarily at local nonprofit organizations.

There is no cost to these organizations and agencies for the extra pair of hands so working with Experience Works benefits both the older trainee and those agencies that typically operate on tight budgets.

In northwest and west central Minnesota, Experience Works helps older workers gain confidence to get back into the workforce by offering computer training, CDL licensure, job search classes, certified nurses assistant (CNA) training, and boiler license training as just a few examples.

Older workers can also train in custodial, production, clerical, reception, secretarial, dietary, informational and retail positions.

If you're 55 and older with limited income and interested in getting back into the work force, contact Jean Lillis at 218-385-2900, ext. 124 or 1-800-450-5627, who serve participants in East Otter Tail and Becker counties.