The Spotlight! is shining brightly in the KRA Hyattsville office, one of its Maryland PGWorks’ sites, on Mr. La’Jon Pryor, who is 29 and married with five children. On August 28, 2012, he enrolled in KRA’s FUSE (Focusing on Utilizing Self-Sufficient Energy for Employment) Program, a requirement for those applying for Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA) benefits under the County’s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program. Despite a strong work history…Senior Optical Technician for an eyewear company for 7 years, and General Manager for a carpet- cleaning firm for 2 years…having relocated from California, Mr. Pryor was struggling to find sustainable employment and turned to TANF for TCA assistance.
According to Echeverria-Batres, “Mr. Pryor’s dedication and determination to achieve self-sufficiency were apparent from the very beginning. He missed only 1 day of the Job-Readiness Workshop classes, and even called to notify me and Ms. Williams, his Instructor, of his intended absence. Not all customers exhibit that level of responsibility.” Williams added, “Throughout his workshop training, he took copious notes and noticeably applied what he learned to develpoing his job application and interviewing skills.”
Philson reported, “I knew of an upcoming job fair, and encouraged Mr. Pryor to attend. At first, he was concerned that he would miss class, but I assured him that he was ‘ready’ for this opportunity to meet prospective area employers, and told him to report to class after the job fair concluded. As a result of his attendance and participation, Mr. Pryor obtained four interviews, two of which resulted in second interviews, and then success! He was offered a fulltime position as a Laborer with New World Development Group on September 28th, accepted the offer, and started work on October 2nd. Based in DC, the company provides general contracting and construction management services, with an emphasis on tenant fit-out and drywall projects. Mr. Pryor told me they have a lot of time-sensitive, deadline-oriented projects, and that he feels ‘right at home’ with this type of responsibility.”
Anthony Featherstone, KRA Program Manager, concluded “The outcome for Mr. Pryor really exemplifies the goal of the KRA/PGWorks Program, which is to assess, prepare, and place jobseekers in suitable employment within 30 days. Not to mention that he is earning almost four times the minimum wage in this area! The entire KRA team is very happy for Mr. Pryor and his family, and pleased that we could play a part in his successful return to the workforce.”