Since our inception in 1990, the goal of Working Wardrobes has been to leave an enduring change in the lives of our clients, their families, and in the community. In the decades that followed, our fearless founder, Jerri Rosen, made sure we did just that. 2020 was a year that changed everything: a devastating fire destroyed our Donation Center and Career Success Center, and just 6 weeks later, the world entered a pandemic. Now, two years later, as much of the world moves into new stages of transition, so does Working Wardrobes. This year we welcomed a new CEO, Bonni Pomush, as well as new programs, challenges, and opportunities to make a difference.
As we step into this new chapter, one thing does not change: we continue to be a comprehensive resource for job seekers. Working Wardrobes offers a full array of wrap around services to help clients prepare to reenter the workforce. This takes a dedicated effort and much collaboration. Every dollar, hour, and donation you give to Working Wardrobes helps build a bridge over barriers to employment. Your contributions get job seekers a step closer to empowerment through self-sufficiency.
How Donations Are Used to Support Client Success
Unemployed and underemployed job seekers in Orange County can rely on a broad range of Working Wardrobes services, including, but not limited to, workforce readiness services, resume help, workshops, job development services, critical needs assistance, wardrobing services, and follow-up job retention services. In 2021, we served a total of 3,789 clients. 76% of those clients were through the Rebuilding Careers Programs. 16% through the VetNet program that supports Veterans transitioning from military to civilian life. 6% of the clients we served were through the reentry process – men and women involved in the justice system, and 3% of the clients served were low-income individuals aged 55 and older with skills to reenter the workforce.
Because of your support, Working Wardrobes provided multiple job assistance service offerings to thousands of clients. The emotional dividends are beyond apparent, for both the clients we serve AND the volunteers. Clients report increased confidence in their abilities, and volunteers report improvement in their teamwork skills and sense of purpose.
Funds are managed effectively because Working Wardrobes is led by decision makers with a mission-driven heart to serve. Our Board of Directors is made up of motivated and influential individuals, determined to make life better for the citizens of Orange County. Our Board includes leadership from organizations like PIMCO, Robert Half, J & J, Boeing, U.S. Bank, Accenture, Boot Barn, and many more. The support and leadership of the Board ensures that all funds raised make the maximum impact in our community, one person at a time.
Making an Impact, One Working Wardrobes’ Client at a Time
Mark is a single father, recently divorced, who was struggling to get back on his feet after being laid off during the pandemic. He had experience as a project manager but had always dreamed of getting into the IT industry. Through virtual workshops and with the help of a Career Coach, he discovered which transferable skills and abilities could carry over into his new industry. Through the Rebuilding Careers Program, he attended our IT Fundamentals class. Weeks later, he was working the Help Desk at an up-and-coming IT company. He is thriving and embracing the fresh start in his career and life.
Charles was referred to our Reentry to Success program by his parole officer. He had spent over 20 years incarcerated and had no support available when he was released. During his incarceration, Charles kept busy assisting himself and other inmates with legal documents, which created in him a dream to one day become a paralegal. Charles knew there were gaps in his knowledge, but he was determined to attend as many workshops as possible. After much dedicated time learning and utilizing the Working Wardrobes Job Search Lab, Charles was hired at a law office as a file clerk. Since then, he has focused on obtaining his paralegal certificate. He knows it will take time, but is elated at the opportunity to continue making progress toward his goal.
You Can Help Further by Joining the Rebuilding Careers Coalition
The Rebuilding Careers Coalition (RCC) is a giving collective of visionary individuals and corporations in our community who are dedicated to helping individuals like Mark and Charles overcome barriers and achieve meaningful employment. There are four levels at which you can join. Members receive invitations to exclusive networking and featured speaker events, and additional perks related to their level of commitment. When you partner with Working Wardrobes, you are making a difference in the lives of individuals, families, and the Orange County community as a whole.
Please Join Today!
For more information visit: workingwardrobes.org/RebuildingCareersCoalition or email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
About Working Wardrobes
Working Wardrobes is Orange County’s foremost workforce readiness nonprofit, providing the tools to at-risk men, women, young adults, and Veterans so they can achieve the dignity of work. Founded in 1990 by Jerri Rosen, Working Wardrobes has been serving Southern California for over 30 years by providing assessments, job training, career placement, and wardrobe services to almost 115,000 clients to overcome barriers to employment and achieve The Power of a Paycheck™. For more information, please visit www.workingwardrobes.org.