Camden County Road and Bridge will soon take part in a two-part work program aimed at giving disadvantaged youth a chance to learn career skills.

Camden County Road and Bridge will soon take part in a two-part work program aimed at giving disadvantaged youth a chance to learn career skills. 

Administrator Lee Schuman says the project will take part in two phases, one that goes year round and another that is focused on the Summer. The program is hosted by the Central Workforce Development Board and will be fully funded in terms of payment to the workers and workman’s comp. 

The year round program, named Youth 180, is a state program that aims to teach life skills that would further help youth deciding where they want to take their career. Tiffany Manning, Workforce Development Specialist, says they want to help provide goals for youth to use to help plot a course forward with their education or work dreams. 

This work will be in a career field of the participants choosing and will provide income as well as a boost to a resume. The Youth 180 program will provide up to 240 hours of work time, or less depending on the arrangement set between the business and the participant. 

Criteria to join the Summer only program is simply income based. To join the Youth 180 program, the selection board looks for a number of disadvantages to consider, including pregnancy, high-school dropouts or any overall factor that may put a community member at risk.

Schuman says that Camden County Road and Bridge hope to bring someone on soon who can help them with an array of tasks throughout the county. This includes flagging traffic, cutting brush and the possibility of helping out in the machine shop. If Schuman has availability and decides the participant is right for the job, he has the ability to hire them once the 240 hour session is complete.

This is the county’s first attempt at taking part in the program and Schuman says he sees a benefit to participating. With no cost to the county, he says it will not only go towards helping someone learn some real-world applications, but also give Road and Bridge much needed help.

“We’re excited for the opportunity,” Schuman said. “We want to help out some youngsters and teach the skills involved with working for the county.”