CAVE SPRING UNITED MEHODIST CHURCH: Each year Back on the Path, the local job search assistance ministry, hosts its annual reunion of all the job seekers involved in this program, now beginning its 14th year of service. This affair took place at Cave Spring United Methodist Church on Tuesday, December 11.
Founders Al Colgrove and David Meashey welcomed “hikers” (group’s term for job seekers) and other guests to the annual get together. Other hosts for the evening were the regular Tuesday night leaders of the group. These are Alice Stoddard, Art Wingfield, Bruce Prillaman, Carolyn Wagner, David Ross, Deb Squire and Mary Winks.
Garry Norris, owner of Express Employment Professionals, and Leslie Coty, president of Coty Connections, represented the special group of resource folks, mentors, career coaches, and other “helpers” that support the group throughout the year.
It is a night of fellowship, food, fun, networking and reminiscing, explained Al Colgrove. “And, its a great time to ‘catch up’ with friends from past seasons and to meet the current class of job seekers”, added Colgrove. Another of the event’s purposes is to have past hikers tell their own success stories, offer advice and suggestions and provide positive perspectives to the job seekers present each year.
Back on the Path began in the fall of 1999, originally serving to offer comfort and encouragement to unemployed church members. “After a couple of years, it became an outreach program for the church and extended service throughout the Roanoke Valley and beyond”, related David Meashey, and later on the group’s weekly meetings became more instructional in nature, offering a wide range of seminars and workshops dealing with the mechanics of the job search”.
“Most importantly, Back on the Path keeps in touch with the its members through daily emails with job postings, special announcements about networking opportunities, job fairs and free training events, plus lots of tips and advice for our hikers”, said Bruce Prillaman, who manages the +400 email distribution chores.
Meetings will resume on January 8 at Cave Spring United Methodist Church just off Colonial Avenue at 4505 Hazel Drive in Southwest Roanoke County.
Submitted by Al Colgrove