Member Spotlight: Volunteers of America Pennsylvania

Unifying the voice of nonprofits to leverage their power

Volunteers of America Pennsylvania

Volunteers of America Pennsylvania is dedicated to helping the most vulnerable live healthy, safe and productive lives. Presently we operate 17 separate programs throughout the state serving persons with disabilities; at-risk children and youth; individuals and families in emergency situations; those in need of employment; seniors; individuals with mental illness; families with limited incomes; infants, children, and adolescents that have been abused, neglected, and/or exploited; children with behavioral challenges and educational deficits; women who are homeless; pregnant teens and teenage mothers; and homeless veterans and their families.

In Southwest Pennsylvania we operate two long standing programs; the Workforce Development Program for individuals with disabilities and disadvantages and All Of Us Care, an out of school program for youth at risk in the Lower Valley. Both of these programs impact lives daily and serve the mission of VOAPA. For more information or to DONATE, go to www.voapa.org and see how we deliver services across the state. For more information about our Workforce Development Programs, call 412-246-4434 or email Barbara at blehman@voapa.org. For information on All of Us Care, contact Ruby at  rwilkosz@voapa.org.

Workforce Development Program

COMPETITIVE EMPLOYMENT TRAINING

Our Workforce Development Program for people with disabilities moves participants closer to their aspirations for realistic employment opportunity by offering a combination of adult training classes for competitive employment. Participants have a more focused opportunity to develop work place professionalism, customer service skills, computer technology for the work place and action plans that move them toward traditional competitive employment.

SMALL BUSINESS INCUBATOR

The Workforce Development Program Small Business I ncubator continues to prove that there is viable potential for work through the alternative career path of self-employment. The Small Business Incubator provides coaching, training and referrals to resources as well as support for launch stage marketing through the FIRST STEP Marketing Project. Participants develop the skills to participate in successful business ownership, strive for meaningful community engagement and are prepared for competitive inclusion in the workforce on their own terms.

SUMMER YOUTH PROGRAM and WORKREADINESS TRAINING

Our summer program and work-readiness training for high school students with disabilities focuses on exploring skills talents and abilities, employer expectations, and interview skills as well as professional soft skills development, technology for the workplace and customer service skills development. This program is interactive and community based. The goal is to begin to prepare participants for the world of work.

EMPLOYER EDUCATION

This annual event provides best practice information for the recruiting, hiring, inclusion and retention of individuals with disabilities. It includes a guest keynote speaker and panel discussions on topics of relevance for disability employment.

ALL OF US CARE

Volunteers of America of Pennsylvania’s All of Us Care program serves approximately 300 young people each year. This program provides meaningful programming and measurable impact on the lives of youth in the Lower Allegheny Valley. The All of Us Care program is offered during the at-risk, after-school hours and throughout the summer. Our goal is to ensure that children and their families avoid the negative influences that emerge when children and youth are unsupervised and on the streets. We do this by providing positive programming to keep young people engaged that includes homework help, digital literacy and robotics, creative play, reading help, anti-bullying meetings, cooking classes and technology access. Our summer program provides educational, creative and cultural experiences for the kids.

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