A local operation that aids job seekers is on the move — but only a short distance away from the present location of the NCWorks Career Center of Surry County in Mount Airy.
The center’s new digs are at 942 W. Pine St. in a building formerly occupied by Farm Bureau in the vicinity of CF Jones Classic Cafe. That is less that a mile from the existing 541 W. Pine St./Suite 300 facility that is near Mill Creek General Store.
Officials say that a one-week shutdown of the NCWorks Career Center will accompany the move, which was announced Thursday by the Piedmont Triad Regional Workforce Development Board based in Kernersville.
The center will be closing on Monday and is to remain inactive until reopening on Oct. 17 at the new location.
Those needing to access services during that time can contact the NCWorks Career Center of Forsyth County at 336-464-0520 or online at www.NCWorks.gov, for assistance from Tuesday through next Friday.
Demand for workers
When asked Thursday afternoon what was facilitating the move, Tammy Caudill, strategic initiatives coordinator of the Piedmont Triad Regional Council, indicated that it is space-related — linked to increased demands for center services and a need to better accommodate that.
“With the continued labor shortage, businesses are in greater need of assistance recruiting qualified employees,” explained Caudill, whose role with the council involves working on behalf of member communities including Mount Airy and Surry County.
Many services are available to job seekers at NCWorks which help fill that employment void.
“NCWorks does more to help with addressing this problem than simply place individuals into jobs,” Caudill added.
For qualifying individuals, funding is available for training programs to help prepare them to fill most needed jobs, she mentioned regarding one.
“Many of the services available through NCWorks are available to all North Carolina citizens,” Caudill advised. “Some people are unaware that these benefits are available to them at no charge through the NCWorks Career Center.”
Caudill has pointed out in the past that some people are unaware that an individual does not have to be unemployed in order to use many of NCWorks’ services.
In program year 2021/2022 (June 30, 2021 to July 1, 2022) the NCWorks Career Center of Surry County provided nearly 21,500 services to 3,840 individuals, according to the strategic initiatives coordinator.
“We hope to serve even more individuals at the newly renovated career center and continue to help close the gap between the workforce and needs of local businesses.”
This was echoed by Career Center Manager Beverly Frey, who says the staff is eager begin offering employment serves at the new location.
“Over the past few months, work has been done to renovate the facility and we are excited to have individuals visit us there,” Frye said in a statement.
“We are proud of the work accomplished by all of the NCWorks Career Centers in our seven-county local area,” Executive Director Wendy Walker-Fox of the Piedmont Triad Regional Workforce Development Board said in a statement. “We are looking forward to the opening of the new NCWorks Career Center in Surry County and are grateful to the staff of the Forsyth County career center for assisting with serving customers during the move.”
A grand opening is planned at the new location on a date yet to be announced.