Summer youth program adds 600 jobs throughout Lucas County

Some teens throughout Lucas County are getting a headstart in the "real world," this summer. About 600 people ages 16 to 24 started their first week of work because of a summer youth employment program.

The Lucas County Workforce Development Agency (LCWDA) created the 5-week-program that ends August 17. Workers can earn an $8 hourly wage for up to 40 hours per week with about 100 participating companies in the manufacturing sector and community agencies.

Eligible youth attended job readiness orientations to determine their job interests and skill levels to prep them for their first jobs in the workforce.

Commissioner Pete Gerken said in a prepared statement, "Positive work experiences can be the cornerstone for lifelong employment. Your first job is often the most important and the one most remembered. We're happy to offer that first opportunity for our community's most at-risk youth."

The program received $1.7 million in grant money from the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services. It is part of a 2013 Temporary Aid to Needy Families (TANF). LCWDA for the past several years also received funding from TANF, as well as other State and federal sources, including the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.