OKOLONA – A new opportunity for women to learn employment and basic life skills is coming to Okolona.
Revelation House is an extension of the Christian Women’s Job Corps and is located at 106 East Drive. Director Judy Neely has been out in the community making contacts and meeting people while also working on renovations to the house that will hold classes for women.
“It’s a big house, but we’ll need every drop of space,” Neely said. “We will have openings for 12 women per semester and will offer classes Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday from 8:30 to 3:30,” Neely said.
Classes to be offered include Financial Management, Communications, Computer Skills, Job Training, Cooking and Women’s Health and Nutrition. The goal of the program is to steer women to a positive place in life through self-improvement.
“We want to help them move into a position where they are able to maintain goals, become spiritually mature and self-sufficient,” Neely said. “We’re all about moving forward, but you need to be serious about what you’re doing because we’re serious about it.”
The program mirrors the Okolona School District academic year and those interested should be ready to make a commitment.
For the first semester, students attend classes and work on self-esteem, self-confidence, employment skills and work ethic, all in a Christian-based curriculum.
During the second semester, the class work is reduced and students begin internships and job shadowing in area businesses to learn job skills. At the end of the second semester, the participating company has the option to hire the intern or, if they are not in a position to do so, provide them with a letter of reference for future employers. The program is highly structured.
“To participate, you must attend every class,” Neely said. “We do provide lunch and the classes are free. It’s strict, but we’re upfront about it.”
Christian Women’s Job Corps was established by the Women’s Missionary Union of the Southern Baptist Convention in 1996. Revelation House is nationally registered and Neely is working on the process for national certification. Currently it is under the umbrella of Faith Outreach Church in Okolona.
Neely is looking for partners, sponsors, mentors and volunteers to help get Revelation House ready for the planned Sept. 13 opening. She has established an advisory board of local men and women and four women already have applied to attend free classes.
Revelation House is dependent on donations at this time.
“We have to have funding,” Neely said. “I’m also encouraging people in the community to volunteer. Like for the cooking class, I’m asking women in the community to come in and bring their favorite recipes and teach the girls to cook. We need mentors and volunteers. We have big plans, big dream and big visions.”
– Call Judy Neely at (662) 276-5046 for an application.
– Call 276-5046 or stop by 106 East Drive with helping hands and willing hearts.
Lisa Voyles/Chickasaw Journal