Summit County will offer summer jobs for youths through a temporary job-assistance program for needy families.
The county’s Department of Job and Family Services has received a $1.6 million state grant to employ 1,225 youths.
To be eligible, participants must be Summit County residents, ages 16 to 24, living in households that don’t exceed 200 percent of the federal poverty level.
The youths will earn $8 an hour and can work a maximum of 15 hours a week. The program will run from June 1 through Aug. 31.
“The number of weeks a youth is employed depends on their school calendar and extracurricular activities,” said Steve Zimmerman of Job and Family Services. “Last year, some of the youths left the program early because of summer camps or high school football practice, which begins in August.”
The jobs will range from clerical and office work to janitorial and maintenance work, as well as lawn care, data entry, summer camp counselors, food service and child-care services.
“The program provides valuable work experience and teaches job responsibility,” Summit County Executive Russ Pry said. “The funding will provide jobs for qualifying youth in all areas of Summit County.”
No specific employers have been named, but county officials say they will recruit from all parts of Summit County from the private sector, public sector and nonprofit agencies.
In the past, the city of Akron, Goodwill and the Akron Metropolitan Housing Authority have employed the youths.
Zimmerman said they try to match the youths with employers close to where they live. The county will also provide bus passes.
The county wants to farm out managing the program, including payroll, saying the manpower isn’t there.
“If we wind up managing the program, it would put a burden on the fiscal office because we would have to use our own staffing,” Zimmerman said. “We selected providers who have the experience of working with youth and have worked with the county in the past, so they are very familiar with the eligibility rules and the overall management of youth.”
Eligible youths that register will be placed in the program on a first-come, first-serve basis. County officials say they will maintain a waiting list.
If someone drops out of the program in June or July, they will try to fill those slots.
Marilyn Miller can be reached at 330-996-3098 or firstname.lastname@example.org.