Sunday, February 22, 2009

NOVA Weekly Report


Update for Week of February 17th.

The week was busy as we prepared for two meetings, Congressman Rodney Alexander and traveling (today, 2/21/09) to Baton Rouge to meet with the Louisiana Workforce Commission.

The meeting with the Congressman went well. We will continue to pursue any opportunities they may find. I will update next week concerning the Louisiana Workforce Commission meeting. Also we began preparing the Delta Regional Authority Grant through the help and effort of Rebecca Mixon of St. Francis Medical Center.

We are also working with a team of students from the Mass Communication program at ULM in developing marketing and promotional materials for NOVA.

The highlight of the week was the overview with nine (9) potential participants for the Program. We walked away from that meeting again reaffirming why we are here. Great job Ms. Woods and thank you to the Board Members, Ms. Eva Dyann Wilson and Dr. Novack who were able to attend.

Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we continue to develop new opportunities for NOVA.

Have A Great Weekend!

Thanks and best regards,
Paul West

P.S. Anyone who would like to help with the Black History Parade on the 28th please let me or Ms. Woods know. We also need about $150.00 for candy if you or someone you know would like to donate.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Interfaith on Council Agenda

Interfaith @ Monroe City Council
Tuesday, March 10, 6:00 pm

Northern & Central Louisiana Interfaith is scheduled to address Monroe City Council Tuesday, March 10, during the pre-council meeting that begins at 6:00 pm. We will speak for a resolution to renew funding for NOVA. We need to be there in numbers to make sure City Council understands the diversity and breadth of support for workforce development in our community.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

NOVA Events Next Week

NOVA New Participant Overview
Tuesday, February 17, 2 pm
Workforce Investment Center
1301 Hudson Lane

Please invite people who want to change their lives by training for a living wage job with benefits and career track. That's what NOVA does! Interfaith leaders interested in being mentors or just knowing more about NOVA so they can spread the word are also welcome.

Interfaith Meeting with Congressman Rodney Alexander
Thursday, February 19, 9 am
Congressman Alexander's Monroe Office
1900 Stubbs Ave., Suite B

Interfaith has asked Congressman Alexander to support NOVA with federal dollars and he agreed to do so. We presented him with a $300,000 proposal. This meeting is to follow-up on our request.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Our Opportunity to Write the History of Ouachita Parish

From Sue Edmunds Nicholson, Chamber CEO, for immediate action:

From time to time all of you have offered to help when we have a community issue. I need your help now.

As you know, Gardner Denver Thomas, a local company that employees 86 people, will consolidate with another plant. What we do not know at this time is if the company will choose to consolidate in Sheboygan, Wisc. or Monroe. If they choose to consolidate in Monroe, our community could gain more than 200 jobs that pay $15 or more per hour plus benefits. The company could potentially consolidate other facilities here, too.

Company officials are working with a team of community officials to put together the most aggressive package we can offer. One component is compiling a list of people who are interested in working at the plant if Gardner Denver Thomas consolidates here. To find potential employees, Gardner Denver Thomas is hosting a job fair Monday, February 16, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 pm at the Monroe Civic Center Conference Hall.

Those who are interested in these living-wage jobs with benefits need to complete a survey form. This can be done at the Civic Center Monday the 16th, or at the Chamber all of next week. Interfaith leaders will receive a copy of the form via e-mail, as well as a flier advertising the job fair. These items should be printed and distributed at all Interfaith institutions and to neighbors and friends--anyone who might be interested in this opportunity. We need to get the word out!

Also, we need letters from the community that encourage company officials to come to Monroe because of the great and productive workforce and caring and welcoming community we have. We need to include a note that we will welcome anyone relocating to the area and will help them adjust to the community. Several years ago, when we were trying to bring State Farm to Monroe , several of our churches offered to “adopt” families to help with their transition. It would be great if we could do that again.

Interfaith leaders will also receive a sample letter via e-mail, but feel free to rework in your own words. PLEASE SEND THESE LETTERS TO: Sue Nicholson, Monroe Chamber of Commerce, 212 Walnut Street, Suite 100 , Monroe , LA 71201, or drop them at the Chamber office (same address). All letters will be sent in one proposal to GDT officials.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Collective Leaders Meeting

The focus of the Feb. 9 Collective Leaders Meeting was public education and workforce development.

Dale Farley reported on last week's Coalition for Quality Public Education Meeting. The Coalition is discussing new approaches to addressing issues in public education. The Monroe City School Board has not responded constructively to the Coalition's attempt of the past couple of years to develop working relationships. Eva Dyan Wilson reviewed Interfaith's history of working with public education through involving parents in the schools. We need to renew that kind of organizing.

Cindy Smith reported on the FLAG meeting for NOVA participants she and Eva Dyan Wilson attended earlier Monday. The FLAG meeting is for NOVA participants to discuss progress and problems in their training programs, and to gain skills such as goal setting. NOVA is recruiting for future training. Interfaith people are urged to refer people they know who could benefit from NOVA. An overview for potential NOVA participants, and anyone else who wants to know more about the program, is scheduled February 17 at 2:00 pm at the Workforce Investment Board, 1301 Hudson.

The following institutions were represented: St. Alban's Episcopal, St. Thomas' Episcopal, Mt. Nebo Missionary Baptist, Jesus the Good Shepherd Catholic, Messiah Lutheran.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Additional Events

JGS "Just Faith" Journey for Justice
Saturday, Feb. 21, 11:30 am - 2:30 pm
Mount Nebo Baptist Church
2930 Jackson St.

This event is part of the Jesus Good Shepherd "Just Faith" course. Interfaith leaders welcome.

Interfaith Training for House Meetings Campaign
Saturday, March 7, 9:00 - 12:30
Mount Nebo Baptist Church
2930 Jackson St.

This house meetings training is for all institutions interested in growing and strengthening as institutions. House meetings help institutions identify leaders and issues people are willing to work together to address.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Two Events Monday, Feb. 9

Strategic Team, Clergy, Collective Leaders
February 9, 12:30 pm
Workforce Investment Solution Center
1301 Hudson Lane

The Interfaith Strategic Team, Clergy & Collective Leaders who are available will meet with the first NOVA class at its weekly meeting. This is a great opportunity for Interfaith folks to meet NOVA participants and see NOVA in action. A light lunch will be served at 12:30 and the meeting commence at 1:00.

Collective Leaders Meeting
February 9, 2009
7:00 – 8:30 pm
St. Alban’s Episcopal Church
2816 Deborah Drive

This will be our first meeting at St. Alban’s. To get there, go north on Highway 165, turn left onto the Forsythe extension, then turn right onto Deborah Drive at the first stoplight. Deborah Drive is a long, windy street. Keep going until you reach a stop sign. St. Alban’s is on your left just beyond the stop sign. There are two parking lots; the second one is closer to the parish hall doors, but it is small and might get full.

All members of Interfaith institutions and anyone who is interested in finding out about the work of Interfaith is welcome at the Collective Leaders Meeting.

The Collective Leaders Meeting is *always* the second Monday of the month at 7:00 pm. Please plan accordingly!