MBL, Inc. runs summer job placement program as Gainesville chief hires youth

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) — Teenagers looking for summer work have a resource in Alachua County.

“A child learning the work ethic, getting a job and being successful,” said CEO of Minority Business Listings, IncorporatedWayne Fields.

the Alachua County Children’s Trust finance the new Alachua “TeensWork” Youth Summer Employment Program. MBL, Inc. specializes in job matching and job training for teens ages 14-18.

“To find them jobs, train them on employability skills issues and how to write a resume, how to interview, how to write an application or how to complete one and we recruit those kids from Gainesville, Alachua, Hawthorne as well as Waldo,” Fields said.

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Teens would work up to 25 hours a week under the program and must live in Alachua County to qualify. Fields said his team is qualified to handle the task because of its impact on the community.

“Make a difference by having extra income in their family because we don’t know what a young person or a child is going through,” Fields said.

“So for a parent to come in and say I would like my child to work, but for that child to also say, I want a job. It is this type of cohesion that we are looking for.

The program is accepting 105 teenagers this year, paying them $10 an hour.

“Our Smoke Shack will be geared toward youth employment,” said Gainesville chef and restaurateur Carl Watts. “And then I thought I was from East Gainesville and I said, this is something we have to do.”

He opened Underground kitchen to serve food for souls, but he wants to feed souls by hiring teenagers to lead the new Smoke Shack Summer Camp and Chef Empowerment.

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“Put them in leadership positions in training,” Watts added. “We are going to do a food preparation program for children here and we are going to put one of the children, his name is Nya, in this place as a manager to kind of facilitate his leadership and management skills.”

Watts grew up in East Gainesville and called these two new ventures, “her baby.” The plan is to start a food science lab in the Duval Early Learning Center and let a few teenagers help run the camp.

“The fact that we can take one person and say we’re successful. A person who is not incarcerated, in prison, shot, you know, it’s worth it.

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