Philadelphia, May 20, 2011 –Mayor Michael A. Nutter kicked off the 2011 Philadelphia City-wide Career Fair bringing together the largest gathering of resources aiding in the employment and re-entry of ex-offenders and homeless individuals in the city’s history. With the support of the Office of the Deputy Mayor for Public Safety, the City-wide Career Fair was sponsored by Resources for Human Development (RHD), a nonprofit which provides job training to marginalized and vulnerable populations.
The City-wide Career Fair brought together sixty-seven employers and ten service organizations, which offered resources for employment, housing, clothing and education at the Philadelphia Municipal Services Building. The Fair featured providers of resources for underserved populations seeking employment, independence and re-entry into society.
“Providing ex-offenders with opportunities to re-enter the workforce is absolutely necessary to combat recidivism and to build a brighter future for our city. Today, more than 1,000 applicants came out, clearly demonstrating a need for these services and opportunities,” Mayor Nutter said. “I would like to thank RHD for sponsoring this job fair and helping job seekers reach their career goals.”
The Citywide Career Fair was inspired by a job fair for homeless and ex-offenders at RHD in November. Mayor Nutter was on hand to address an overflow crowd, and the success of that day began the effort to expand the event to include even more employers and a greater array of resources.
“Resources for Human Development was proud to be a leader for today’s Citywide Job Fair. Reintegration into the workforce for ex-offenders is a large part of the work we do at RHD, so I was so pleased to see the number of employers, individuals and colleagues attend to work towards a shared vision of successful reintegration,” said Jennifer Arthur Lewis, Corporate Assistant Director for Resources for Human Development. Lewis continued by adding, “I want to especially thank Mayor Nutter and Deputy Mayor Gillison for their leadership on this issue because it takes a village to make change happen.”
Keri Salerno, Director of Employer Engagement for Prisoner Reintegration Services, said, “Today’s event was a successful example of how the collaboration between the public, non-profit and private sectors works to assist individuals returning from incarceration to reintegrate into the workforce and community.”
About Resources for Human Development
Resources for Human Development is a comprehensive human services organization based in Philadelphia, Pa. Its mission is to empower the most vulnerable and marginalized members of society as they build the highest level of independence possible. RHD oversees and supports more than 160 locally managed programs in 13 states. These innovative and effective programs specialize in helping people who have mental illnesses or developmental disabilities, homeless individuals and families, people rejoining society after incarceration, and people with histories of substance abuse so that they may all build better lives for themselves, their families and their communities.