Employee Spotlight: Laura Evans, Job Coach for the GROW Program

We are launching a monthly Employee Spotlight series to acknowledge the remarkable work our staff does every day and surface stories of the amazing individuals behind the JVS SoCal team. This will be a great way for us to learn more about each other and our shared dedication to serving our clients. Spotlight Honorees like Laura will then have the opportunity nominate a colleague to receive the same recognition.

This month, we are recognizing Laura Evans, a Job Coach for the GROW Program. Laura has been part of the JVS family for over a year and is based out of our Lancaster GROW office.

What motivates you to wake up and go to work?

 The mission. Nothing is more motivational than knowing I am helping change people’s loves every day. This make sound cliche, but it is what truly gets me out of bed every morning and why I am so fulfilled by my work. I get to the GROW office early before the office even opens and just wait in my car until 8am because I can’t wait to start work. I love what I do and knowing that I have a part in helping people improve their lives and provide for their families.


Tell us a about your job at JVS SoCal?

As a Job Developer in the GROW Program, I help people find job opportunities. This means providing them with the training and coaching they need to become self-sufficient not just temporarily, but long-term. Our team delivers a 3-week Job Readiness Training to participants that have somehow gotten off track and need help getting back on a path to sustainable employment. It is rigorous training program and because of the dedication and commitment we ask of participants, we have great success rates — over 50% get jobs after completing the program. It’s so incredibly rewarding to see how this changes their lives.


How has your work changed since the COVID-19 pandemic started?

We had to pivot quickly to figure out how to offer services without having people come physically into the office.  Our team rolled with the punches and we were able to adapt to submitting job searches in a PDF format, as well as receiving leads that way.  Our clients were required to call in every day after submitting their searches.  This was supposed to go on for 2 weeks, but this group was anxious and some of them continued to call in until just last week.  This allowed us to keep giving them leads and even resulted in several employment opportunities.  While life has certainly changed, the need has stayed the same and we are dedicated to helping meet that need.

On a personal note, we here at the office have been making mask for several weeks.  We are giving the masks away to all that need them. There is a local non-profit that works with the TAY youth, that is in need of masks so we are making some for them as well. This organization is still offering services because without them, these kids would have nowhere to be.  We may be limited in our ability to put people to work right now, but what a pleasure it is to be able to help where we can!


Tell us something unique about yourself?

Here are a few things that come to mind:

  • There is 20 years between my oldest and youngest child.
  • I can hang and tape drywall. 
  • For some reason I wake up at 4AM everyday….ugh.
  • I’m the first one at work every single day.