EDITORIAL: Thumbs up and down

Jul. 14, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

THUMBS DOWN:Soggy ‘works

Farrell Road has been the sight of an annual Fourth of July fireworks extravaganza for the last few years that young and old have trilled to. The Ammons family, through Sanford Health and Rehabilitation, has been putting together the show in honor of Independence Day, but this year it’s been a bit of a chore. Really icky weather — incessant rain that seems to have been falling since Memorial Day — has caused another cancellation of the show. Originally scheduled for the Fourth, it’s been re-scheduled twice, most recently for Saturday. Organizers postponed that on Friday and say they’ll announce details about new plans as soon as the grounds around Farrell Road dry up, which at this rate could be Veterans Day.

The abundant rains have dampened more than just the spirits of revelers on the Fourth. We hope the drier air headed our way this week helps this show finally go on.

THUMBS UP:Sanford Jobseekers

Originally a ministry of First Baptist Church, Sanford’s Jobseekers celebrated its fourth anniversary this week — meaning that since the worst of the recession back in 2009, volunteers have provide a weekly place for refuge, counsel, friendship and support to those who unexpectedly found themselves amongst the unemployed.

Lee County’s unemployment rate still rests well into double-digits, and despite what some are claiming to be an economic recovery — retail sales are climbing, housing sales are up and confidence in the economy has increased — there are still real and felt needs among those having a hard time finding jobs. With North Carolina’s long-term unemployed now losing federal benefits, the need will remain. Jobseekers, which meets at 8:30 each Wednesday morning at First Baptist at 202 Summit Drive, celebrated its anniversary this week with testimonials from those who have been able to find employment. Local Employment Security Commission manager Josephus Thompson described Jobseekers as “a great grassroots movement to assist clients with finding jobs and to network with people who are having a difficult time seeking a job,” and cited the value of the fellowship at the weekly meetings. At the meetings, participants network for 30 minutes and then take part in an hour-long workshop. Topics vary and include discussions of things such as entering a new work field, creating a resume, budgeting and stress management. They also hold a devotional and celebrate any job landings or interviews the attendees may have.

Perhaps there won’t be a need for a fifth anniversary, but if joblessness persists, it’s good to know Jobseekers will be there, too.