Today the news touted the statistic that 3 out of 4 teenagers between the ages of 14 and 19 are unemployed. I have two of them. My daughter doesn’t even get babysitting gigs because people can’t afford to spend the gas to pick her up, pay her, drive her home and pay for their entertainment and food while their out. My son is going off to college this fall; we might as well sent him to college this summer because he wasn’t hired any where he applied. Most of his friends hit dead ends in their employment searches. Jobs offered are turned down because the gas money will suck up 3/4 of the pay or the insurance liability required for the delivery job is more than the minimum wage pay.
Employers only hire teens who commit to work year round. Some teens focus on sports and academics during the school year in hopes of scholarships. Some can work and do all these other things but most can not. I understand why employers want to hire the retired, the out-of-work white-collar who’s willing to check out groceries, and other individuals who are in need of an income. Most employers think teens are the least in need. After all they live at home–usually, and their parents can support them. What if their parents are unemployed or have high medical bills.?
If teens don’t at least get work experience they are more likely to get in trouble which costs us all. If they don’t get in trouble they may not be able to afford their education or training they need to get a job. If they have no experience will someone hire them when they’re 20? Where will our future come from if we don’t invest in it?
Teens can get experience through service and volunteering. If your teen is unemployed have them look for volunteer work or come up with their own project.
1. Call local shelters, Salvation Army, thrift stores, and non-profits.
2. Contact teen centers, boys and girls club, rec centers, or your public school.
3. Contact your local churches or animal shelters.
4. Contact the Senior Citizen Center, Rehabilitation facilities, rest home, senior living residences.
5. Libraries, small businesses, parks, etc.
Keep track of hours, duties, and contact persons on a sheet of paper to use on future job applications, resumes, scholarship applications, or club membership (National Honor Society). Don’t get discouraged. Teens can learn job skills at home by doing housekeeping chores, babysitting, and yard work.
May you thrive in nurturing your child’s work experience to help them become independent.