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Health care job fair draws crowd

Joshua Strelbicki, left, and Jessica Burr from the Butler YMCA engage in conversation at the career and resource fair sponsored by the Butler County Health Care Consortium and the Butler Collaborative for Families on Thursday at the Tanglewood Center. Molly Miller/Butler Eagle

Many county businesses were represented at the Butler County Health Care Consortium and Butler Collaborative for Families career and resource fair Thursday.

More than 50 businesses and organizations filled the Tanglewood Center seeking job applicants and providing information to the public.

Becky Clouse, who works for the Butler Health System and co-chaired the event, said the fair is a first for both entities.

“We wanted the businesses of health and human services to fill the employee gap and help employers,” she said. “Success would be filling that need for job seekers and employers.”

Seated, from left, Janet Perine and Nancy Feth talk with Helen Cannonie about their work at the Early Learning Connections at the Butler County Health Care Consortium and the Butler Collaborative for Families on Thursday at the Tanglewood Center. Molly Miller/Butler Eagle

The event had representation from the health care industry, elder care industry, manufacturing industry and others. Clouse said the fair was open to anyone of any employment background.

“I feel like we have half of Butler County here,” she said, between the business representation and attendees.

In addition to hiring businesses, representatives could mingle among the booths and find resources for their companies.

Kayla Price, marketing coordinator for Heritage Elder Law and Estate Planning and organizer of the event, said they were pleasantly surprised by the amount of organizations that participated.

“Community resources that could help make people’s lives easier are here,” she said. “From youth mentoring to helping seniors.”

Students of the Butler County Area Vocational-Technical School stopped by the Concordia and New Haven Court booths, discussing employee expectations and available positions with recruiters.

Casey Bowser, community relations director at New Haven Court, said he attended the job fair to provide information and draw interest to the organization.

“It’s no secret that finding staff is difficult, so we wanted to take part,” he said. “A lot of Vo-Tech (Butler County Area Vocational-Technical School) students are interested in nursing, so we’re hoping to gain interest from those folks and anyone who’s a caring individual who needs information about New Haven.”

Bowser said the organization is hiring nurses, those with housekeeping and kitchen experience and even activity directors.

Similarly, Kristen Fuhrer from The Arc of Butler County said they’re hiring for 35 full-time positions with a minimum starting wage of $15.

“Our largest need is for direct support professionals,” she said. “We’ve struggled with losing staff due to high demand.”

Fuhrer added that The Arc is looking for dedicated people who can provide care to individuals of various abilities.

“We thought this would be an opportunity to get our new starting wage out there,” she said.

Stephany Nulph and Jocelyn Burkhart of Community Care Connections said they attended the fair to network with business that could help their clients.

“We, as employment counselors, are trying to find businesses that can participate in our program,” Nulph said. “We help adults with cognitive disabilities find jobs.”

Burkhart said they found a few resources at the fair and were hoping to partner with a few businesses in the future.

“I think the best outcome is networking with other businesses,” Nulph said. “Not only should there be more of these fairs, but I think (it) should be broadcast that they’re happening.”