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CSE job fair brings together job seekers and employers

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CSE job fair brings together job seekers and employers

PRESCOTT - Looking for work is tough, and finding people to hire can be difficult too, but Prescott's CSE Consulting hopes to make both tasks easier for job seekers and employers alike.

Through a variety of programs, workshops, government initiatives, local resources and one-on-one career counselling, CSE Consulting makes sure that whatever support one might need to enter or re-enter the workforce is made available. Similarly, the four consultants working out of the Prescott office make every effort to match area employers with the workers they need.

"We see our role as bringing together job seekers and employers looking for the right fit," says Rod Palmer, job developer and lead facilitator with CSE Consulting in Prescott.

All of the services provided by CSE are free of charge, as the organization is funded entirely through Employment Ontario. Many people, though, even those who could most benefit from the resources and advice CSE provides, aren't aware of the service.

On Thursday, March 1, CSE Consulting will be holding a large job fair at Fort Wellington National Historic Site in Prescott. Anybody looking for work, from summer students to older workers and everybody in between, is invited to come out and see what's available. Employers are already calling Palmer and his colleagues to reserve their spots.

"We're looking forward to it," says Palmer. "It's going to be an interesting job fair for us."

Last year's fair was held at the CSE's offices, but so many people came out that the quarters proved a little cramped. This year's edition will be held at Fort Wellington's Visitor's Center, where there is much more room for people to move about. Employers will set up booths around the building, and those employers not attending in person will submit job ads that will be posted in a designated location. The fair gives both employers and potential employees a chance to meet face-to-face.

"Oftentimes, that first meeting, that first impression is very valuable," says Palmer, who suggests job-seekers bring plenty of resumes to hand out.

Sometimes, the staff at CSE will collect resumes on behalf of an employer, and in some cases will do some initial screening of the submissions. CSE Consulting is not, however, an employment agency, and it does not directly hire people or fill open positions. It does everything possible, though, to make sure employer and employee find each other.

One of the ways in which this is accomplished is through the group's resource center, which provides job-seekers access to online job boards and a collection of local job ads posted on the wall. People are free to peruse the listings on their own or take advantage of the available expertise and have a consultant provide a guided job search.

"If you need assistance, we have consultants ready to help you," says Palmer.

CSE also organizes regular workshops that provide people the knowledge and support they need to make the most of their job search, and there are also training programs for those who need certain credentials, such as WHMIS or Smart Serve.

There are also numerous programs that cater to the particular needs of specific job-seekers. One such program is called Second Career, and it's intended to help those who have been laid off find a new line of work.

"It's a second chance for people to get back into the workforce," says Palmer

There are also many programs intended to help employers, mostly government initiatives that are delivered in this area through CSE Consulting. Among them are the Canada Ontario Job Grant (COJG), which helps employers offset training costs, up to $10,000, and the Job Matching, Placement and Incentives program (JMPI), which helps to defray the cost of hiring a new employee.

"We have a lot of programs and opportunities to help employers," says Palmer.

CSE also works with ODSP and WSIB clients to help them find work that accommodates their unique individual needs.

Whatever the client's particular requirements might be, the staff at CSE Consulting are dedicated to doing everything possible to help their clients find fulfilling, rewarding work, and each member of staff gets a great deal of personal satisfaction every time they do so.

"It's a very gratifying kind of work we do," says Palmer. "That's what we thrive on."

Palmer says he and his colleagues like nothing better than to pick up the phone and hear an excited client on the line announcing that he or she got the job.

"There's nothing that compares to getting that phone call," says Palmer. "That's what we work for."

Fort Wellington is located at 370 VanKoughnet Street in Prescott, and the job fair will begin at 1:00 p.m. and wrap up around 6:00 p.m. The Kemptville branch of CSE Consulting will also be hosting a job fair, which will take place Thursday, March 8 at the North Grenville Municipal Center. The Kemptville job fair will also run from 1:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

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