Our employment team helps participants generate a resume, prepare for interviews, find employment, and more. Learn about Natura’s journey to success with help from the employment team.
1.) Where do you work and what do you enjoy most about it?
I currently work as an Outreach Professional at Sound Outreach. What I love most about my job is working with clients and connecting families with programs and benefits.
2.) What is the most important goal that you plan to accomplish?
My goal to acquire full-time employment has been met! Now, my goal is to purchase my first home in the very near future.
3.) Who is your hero and why?
At this time, I can’t say I have hero in my life. What I can say is every individual that makes it one more day, given their unpleasant circumstances, is a hero in my book.
4.) What is the most important thing that you learned from the Employment Program at TCH?
The Employment Program at TCH taught me there are still caring and kind individuals who want to see you succeed regardless of barriers. Additionally, it’s great to work with an organization who offers so much to the community.
We value all of our partners. Below is a reflection from Kaylee Davis the HR Manager from Concrete Technology Corporation:
“I truly enjoy working with Tacoma Community House. TCH was one of the first places Concrete Technology Corporation’s then HR Manager, Virginia Robinson, introduced me to TCH and we continue to call upon you today. Paul, Arrie and other members of your staff have always been gracious in our requests for help with job fairs, community partnerships, and for sharing talented, motivated individuals who have become part of the CTC family, like D. Alan Graham, Malik Masten, Kang Yi, Chhoeurb Chhin, Moumen Zareghi, and Hugo Cornelio to name a few.
Like TCH, Concrete Technology Corporation has long been involved with supporting the local community and we appreciate the help and support TCH gives to its clients/students because in return, we receive employees who are willing and able, and just good people to work with. Without TCH we would really be left with a shortage of skilled individuals in an increasingly tight labor market.”
World Refugee Day is observed annually on June 20 and is dedicated to raising awareness of the situation of refugees. It is also a day to recognize the contributions of refugees in our communities. Last year, Tacoma Community House served 176 refugees from 17 countries. TCH has been serving refugees for many years. Significant efforts were made during the 1970s, when the U.S. concluded the war in Vietnam. Thousands of refugees from Southeast Asia fled the Communist regime and many came to the United States. Washington State was the third highest recipient of these refugees, behind California and Texas. One of the first organizations to respond to the needs of Asian refugees was Tacoma Community House. In an effort to help refugees transition, TCH provided counseling, information on employment and educational opportunities, orientation, interpretive services, and English as a Second Language classes.
With the wave of refugees in the 1970s, there were many who came through the doors of TCH seeking hope and one individual remains to this day. His name is Paul Many. Paul first came to TCH for English as a Second Language classes in the months after arriving in Pierce County from war-torn Laos. Paul said the counselors and teachers were “great and encouraged him to further his education.” Once he completed ESL classes Paul took the advice he received and went on to pursue a degree while he continued to visit TCH. He formed lasting friendships with two of his instructors—Candy Carbone and Margo Trevino. In 1982, a position opened in the Employment Department at TCH. Candy encouraged Paul to apply and he did. With Candy’s help, and Paul’s perseverance, he got the job with TCH as a Job Developer and has been a fixture of the agency ever since. (Photographed above is Paul on the right assisting two clients)
As the agency’s mission has broadened, so has Paul’s reach, touching not only new immigrants, but the poor of all origins, including native-born. “That’s the way it should be,” says Paul, who appreciates the cultural mix and the opportunity to give back to the nation that took him in when he was just a teenager. For the past 33 years, Paul has dedicated himself to the community and his mission at TCH is to establish partnerships with area businesses to fill jobs that fit the desires, abilities and wage requirements of his clients. Often, he drives clients to and from job interviews. He tells them to familiarize themselves with each enterprise beforehand so that they are prepared both to respond to questions and offer a few of their own. When they get hired he’s thrilled, and in the months that follow, he visits job sites to make sure expectations are met.
The key to Paul’s success in placing clients, is forming relationships with employers; ensuring that employers benefit from their relationship with TCH. “I like talking to employers,” he says. “We always have repeat customers.” Regular contacts include Menzies Aviation, Marshalls, and Safeway. Some in-house job fairs have featured representatives from Concrete Technology Corporation, Ostroms, and Home Depot.
Driven by his compassion to serve his community, Paul has helped countless participants find jobs. Acting Client Services Director, Jason Scales, says “The most amazing part of Paul’s story is how many lives he has changed. He has placed too many people to count in jobs. No one does a better job of representing TCH and our clients to the business community. Paul, as humble as he is, never takes credit for it. He always gives credit to others. The plain and simple fact is that there would not be an Employment Department at TCH without Paul Many.” Under the passion and motivation of Paul, the Employment Department has thrived and now offers more programs and services.
Through his work at TCH, Paul has touched the lives of thousands of job seekers, and frequently bumps into them around town. When they thank him for his help, he sometimes has trouble remembering their names. It’s no wonder why: He usually counsels 30 clients a month. Executive Director, Liz Dunbar, expresses, “Paul Many has a special gift of finding the right job for the right participant. He is one of a kind and we are lucky to have him.” He is a headhunter for the powerless, a talent scout on behalf of the poor, among them job seekers who scarcely speak English. To many people—Paul is a source of inspiration, encouragement and a crucial piece that helps keep his clients and TCH moving forward.