07/18/05 — Learning to fish: Mount Olive program gives young people job skills, hope

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Learning to fish: Mount Olive program gives young people job skills, hope

The quote goes: “Give the man a fish, he will survive the day. Teach the man to fish, he will know how to survive for life.”

And teaching young people to fish is exactly what is happening at ADLA Inc. in Mount Olive.

The program is designed to not only give young people the skills they need to get a job, but also to give them a chance to earn a little money in the work world.

Youths ages 13-21 are offered training as well as some placement assistance to get them started.

And then, the rest is up to them.

Those are the kinds of programs that could change a life.

Complaining about unemployment, poverty and children without direction is not going to change the number of people on welfare or improve number of qualified workers available to staff future economic development projects.

Offering young people training, capturing them at an early age and showing them the possibilities for their lives are a few positive steps that could beat back the demons of unemployment and poverty that join forces to destroy lives and communities.

ADLA, which stands for “A Lot of Direction and Affection,” is just placing children for the summer now. Maybe soon, the program, and others like it, could be regular fixtures in this community.

One program will not solve all of the problems Wayne County faces with regard to poverty and keeping our children pointed in the right direction.

But change starts with little steps and, in this case, maybe a few young people with some new goals and the skills to make their dreams come true.

Published in Editorials on July 18, 2005 11:51 AM