It’s All in the Name
Wreath-making in progress
The name conveys its mission – Klamath Works is a non-profit organization committed to improving the social and economic quality of life in the Klamath Basin. They accomplish this by helping those in need return to self-sufficiency by preparing them for work. In 2014, government agencies, charities and religious ministries came together to find ways to address social problems in the Klamath Basin. They reached a powerful conclusion: The best welfare program for the needy is more jobs. It was from this collective synergy that Klamath Works sprouted.
Old bikes become new transportation
Why are jobs important? A job is the best weapon in combating poverty – not merely poverty of income, but of health, pride and spirit. Research shows that a key to a satisfying life is not merely money, but “earned success” – the feeling that one controls their own future and deserves the rewards they have attained. Individuals who are working are more involved with their families and communities and less likely to become involved with drugs or crime. Effective charity cannot trap those it serves in dependence or isolation, but must draw them into healthy relationships that encourage growth, restore dignity through work, and ultimately strengthen families and communities.
Klamath Works operates out of a comprehensive campus located south of the downtown core of Klamath Falls, Oregon. The Klamath Works Campus is an evolving integrated social service model that will not only help those in need support themselves financially, but also to fully realize their human potential.
Work is Good
At the heart of its efforts is the Klamath Works Job Program. Participants meet with job coaches to build individualized plans aimed at helping them find, keep and succeed in a job. They gain the ability to care for their families and engage again with the community. Upon successful program completion, Klamath Works helps place participants into jobs and pairs each participant with a mentor who walks and works with them as a friend. One of the newest program additions is the internal mattress and up-cycling initiatives that put people to work immediately and give them valuable on-the-job experience. Since Klamath Works’ inception, 475 clients have been served.
“Work is not just a source of income; it’s a source of self-value and self-esteem. It makes you more functional and more healthy,” notes Paul Stewart, CEO of Sky Lakes Medical Center and one of the programs earliest champions. Klamath Works is still evolving – as any good program should – but it has already received accolades from other communities including Medford and Corvallis, as well as a special commendation from Senator Merkley’s office.
Up-cycled mattresses take on a new life
Our Part of their Story
SmithBates is proud to be a partner and supporter since the beginning – providing a full-suite of services including comprehensive design, branding, web development, video production and marketing expertise to Klamath Works.
“We believe in strengthening our community we call home and supporting nonprofits through in-kind services as well as providing board leadership from our staff,” said SmithBates’ CFO Ann Cavanaugh, who has personally provided leadership, marketing advice and financial support. She added, “We are especially excited to support Klamath Works during this holiday season with our purchase of evergreen wreaths handmade by their program clients. All proceeds support their programs and we dedicate that donation in honor of our loyal customers. We are grateful for everyone’s support this year. Our clients’ business helps to power our community’s success.”