by Alissa Friedman, President and CEO —

 At Opportunity Junction, our annual planning cycle runs from July 1 through June 30. That’s the period of our “fiscal year,” a relatively arbitrary 12-month period that we chose for convenience in financial reporting. (It’s the same fiscal year as the county and local cities use.)

While planning in the age of COVID can be challenging, it’s a process I love: identifying concrete goals that we can achieve to increase our capacity and impact. So here’s a look ahead at a few of our plans for FY2022-23.

This past year, large numbers of job seekers have been applying for our job training programs: the Administrative Careers Training (ACT) program and the Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA) training that is part of our Healthcare Career Pathway (HCP) partnership. Graduates of these programs achieve strong employment outcomes. How might we serve more?

In FY2022-23, we are planning for the possible addition of Medical Assistant training to our offerings. We’ll need funding (of course), classroom space, regulatory approval (my favorite), and partners for externships for the students. For the externships, we’ll definitely inquire with our local hospital system partners. But what about smaller medical offices? Do you have a connection you could make for us?

On the development and marketing side, our team is combining video content with web and social media savvy to increase our visibility to job seekers and prospective volunteers and donors. I admire the ambition of one of their key long-term goals: to be the top search result in Google (organically) for search term: “Job Training Programs Contra Costa County.” How can you help? Follow us and Like and Share everything they post.

On the Administration and Operations side, a key long-term goal is that Opportunity Junction’s culture is one in which all board and staff members feel a sense of belonging and power. Toward that goal, a combined board/staff task force has begun work on an organizational Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging statement. The statement will speak to the entire community we serve, and we want it to reflect our specific values and core beliefs.

I want every person who walks through our door to feel, “you are welcome here,” whether that’s our front door on Delta Fair or our digital front door. Please let me know how we can do a better job of that.

With appreciation for your support and partnership,