The morning of Friday April 27th, 11 Deland, Gibson employees embarked on a trip into Boston to Community Work Service (CWS). The CWS building is 174 Portland Street just around the corner from the TD Garden.

After a brief explanation of the organization’s history, we learned how CWS is an innovative organization helping adults to transform their lives through employment. We then went on a tour and all of us were in awe of the work that is being performed at CWS, from bulk mailings, to packaging tapioca, to culinary training just to name a few.

Once we completed the tour, we were brought back for our true reason and volunteer experience.  Many of the participants go through an extensive training program on how to present themselves professionally for job interviews, how to write their resumes, and answer questions posed in the interview process.  We were informed that we would all be completing 4 interviews for potential hires and most applicants focused on the hotel industry.  It was clear that we as the interviewers were as nervous as the interviewees.  We all put on our best interview hats, went to our designated spots and then proceeded to meet with the ‘future employees’.  CWS had given us questions to ask, many dealt with the soft skills of employment, their strengths, how they handled certain situations and finally how to follow up after the interview. We gave feedback and coaching throughout and met with the organizers after we had finished.

This was an incredible experience. The tenacity, and perseverance these individuals have was inspiring and made for a humbling experience.  We all have hurdles to overcome in our lives and  we were there to help these individuals improve their skills – I believe we accomplished that – as well as a great appreciation for CWS and all of their students.

Cindy