November 11, 2013 in Featured Question of the Week, Question of the Week, Spotlight Answers, Suicide Season by Patt Hardaway
I have seen a definite increase in the last few years of job-related depression. There has been a malaise in my congregation, with friends and with my own family as cutbacks, job loss and lack of opportunity has emotionally crippled families.I have seen qualified individuals who wake earlier then most and spend 40-60 hours a week looking for a job. I have seen these same people after three years have broken spirits from the lack of response.
Joblessness is one of societies most critical issues as the loss of income can not only lead to the loss of the basic needs of housing and food but the loss of a healthy sense of self that can be debilitating and even life threatening.
During this season of gratitude I would hope the faith community would not only be grateful for their own jobs but adopt someone who is jobless by making some calls for them in their own network. 80% of people do not get a job through applying online but by networking. Machine’s programmed to search keywords of a resume have further dehumanized the job seeking process creating a voiceless black hole of no response. All faith communities could use a job board to help connect people as quickly as possible to jobs.
Also, there is an organization that is doing outstanding work in helping job seekers get their footing. They are called CT-Groups, or Career Transition Groups. They meet at various churches in town and offer free support for job seekers. HR volunteers and even counselors trained in depression are on hand to offer help by equipping and encouraging the job seeker in a community setting. The website is www.thectgroups.org. There is a calendar that gives the times and locations of each meeting. Post this in your faith communities to provide a guide post for those who are feeling so very lost. The worst thing we can do is nothing.