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Pilsen, Little Village, West Loop

Southwest Side Nonprofit Launches Program To Help People Impacted By Coronavirus

Central States SER is offering a range of free services, including career coaching, referrals to worksites, access to training programs and resume and cover letter assistance.

A job fair hosted by Central States SER before the coronavirus pandemic
Central States SER/ Facebook
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LITTLE VILLAGE — Central States SER, a workforce development and educational organization, has launched a program aimed at helping people suffering financial hardship during the coronavirus pandemic. 

The group’s initiative, COVID-19 Welcome Center Program, is offering free services like financial assistance, digital literacy courses, worksite referrals and mental health services in Spanish and English. 

Anyone 18 and older who has been impacted by the pandemic can contact the organization for free assistance through its Little Village office, 3948 W. 26th St. Peple interested in learning more can email SER at welcomingcenterproject@gmail.com or call 773-357-5617 or 312-566-8159.

Hector Lopez, project manager at SER, said communities of color like Little Village have been disproportionately affected by the pandemic. In the city’s second wave, infections are surging most in the Southwest Side.

“ZIP codes on the Southwest Side have seen a drastic spike of positive cases these past weeks, and it is only going to get worse,” Lopez said in a statement.

“Our communities were already struggling pre-pandemic and are now faced with many new challenges. At SER, our staff is working hard to help as many individuals as possible overcome obstacles during this difficult time.” 

Opened in 1987, the organization typically assists 12,000 people annually, but that number has declined because of the pandemic. 

Roxana Delgado, a spokeswoman for the group, said the members plan to tailor support “for each individual and their specific needs.” 

As part of the program, individuals can receive career coaching, referrals to worksites, access to training programs and resume and cover letter assistance.

Delgado hopes to reach immigrants who have difficulty accessing other assistance programs.

“We are here to help close the gap by giving our community members access to resources that will prepare them for upward mobility and self-sufficiency,” Lopez said in a statement.

Block Club Chicago’s coronavirus coverage is free for all readers. Block Club is an independent, 501(c)(3), journalist-run newsroom.

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