Money used to help long-term unemployed find jobs in Yakima County

YAKIMA, Wash. -- Gov. Jay Inslee has awarded grants across the state to help people find jobs. It's about getting those who have been unemployed for long periods back to work.

It can happen to anyone. One day you're working, the next day you're not.

Chris Kinzell got laid off a year ago. She's been unemployed since then.

"Resume after resume, no phone calls, no interviews," said Chris. "I was on the computer every day."

Searching for a job became discouraging. It was the first time Chris had ever been laid off.

"Every day that I didn't get an interview, it just takes another big smack to your confidence," said Chris.

More than $200,000 from federal funds will help the long-term unemployed get back to work. It helps those living in Yakima, Kittitas, Klickitat and Skamania Counties.

WorkSource will help build resumes, provide training for interviews and pay wages short-term. Chris said once she got help changing her resume, she started getting job interviews.

"Resumes are totally different, cover letters are different," said Chris. "Just learning how to put those together is quite a chore."

WorkSource will also look at jobs in demand and train on those skills.

More than 8,000 people in Yakima County are long-term unemployed.

"These are the people whose kids go to school with your kids," said South-Central Washington Workforce Development Council Director Patrick Baldoz. "They could be your parents, they could be your neighbor, they could be a child."

Chris said, with help from these services, she was able to get a new job that starts next month.

These services are expected to start next month.