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Live the Love

Peace Church - Lombard

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Job Training, Teaching Computer Skills, and Living the Love!

After I retired five years ago, I decided to volunteer at the People’s Resource Center (PRC). I first worked in the Wheaton PRC computer room during “Open Training” time on Fridays.  Any PRC client is welcome to come in and ask for computer help. Typically, clients take a 90-minute a week (for 7 weeks) computer class through the PRC and need individual help on Windows, Word, Excel, or PowerPoint. Some clients might need help with resumes and online job applications. I continue to volunteer on Fridays but for the last two years I have also been teaching the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) classes—Word and Excel applications, rotating days with two other instructors. 

The MOS Word class lasts 5 weeks and the Excel one lasts 6 weeks. We teach four days a week for 3 hours each day. We also have a 5th day as a make-up/ help session and have provided additional help on Saturdays. At the end of the session, students take the official Microsoft exam that is project-based and limited to 50 minutes.  It is an intense class but saves students hundreds of dollars and strengthens their job skills. If a student passes the certification exam, it is a strong addition to their resume. Even if a student doesn’t pass the certification test (70% threshold), just listing this class on their resume can help them land a job.

After we finish the current class, we will offer the MOS Word and Excel classes in the evening starting Aug. 28. Other sessions after that will be held in the mornings. There is a screening process in order to be accepted into this program, so please check the PRC’s website for more information: www.peoplesrc.org 

The PRC could always use more volunteers teaching computer classes—the list of classes is also on the website. But if you would like to volunteer in a different area, there are opportunities in the food pantry, clothing closet, literacy, art program and more! You will never be bored volunteering there. It has been a blessing to serve so many diverse people!

And, if you live in DuPage County, you can also reap the benefits of the PRC. You just have to bring proof of residency to the PRC during certain hours and you can become a client.

Submitted by Rose Hopkins, Peace Church member.

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