If you’re looking for work in Milford, there’s a new tool at your disposal, right in your back yard.



Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church is the first church in Delaware to join the Department of Labor’s SHARE program, allowing it to provide job-hunting services for members of the public at no charge.


If you’re looking for work in Milford, there’s a new tool at your disposal, right in your back yard.

Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church is the first church in Delaware to join the Department of Labor’s SHARE program, allowing it to provide job-hunting services for members of the public at no charge.

“Someone can e-mail their resume to thousands of potential employers, throughout the state and even the tri-state area,” Bethel AME Pastor Gregory Nelson said.

Nelson pushed to get Bethel involved after he discovered the program at a Department of Labor seminar for the religious community in Dover this fall. He says he realized immediately how much potential it had for Milford.

“I knew it would be a great opportunity for people of this community,” he said. “I hear all the time, ‘I don’t have transportation to Dover or Georgetown,’ where they’d be able to use the computers there for job hunting. Now there’s an option right here.”

Thanks to SHARE, Bethel’s community center has four laptop computers and printers available for job-hunters to look for positions across the tri-state area by location, employer and type of work. They can type up a resume, with help from trained volunteers to fine-tune it, and fax or e-mail applications to hundreds of employers at a time. The entire process is free.

“What may cost a person $10, $15, $20 for a week of job-searching, they can come here and do that free of charge,” Nelson said. “I think it’s a wonderful opportunity.”

The center is open every Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Nelson and Veronica Prince, Paulette Whaley and Kyle Cephas, all local volunteers, have been trained to staff it.

The church hopes that the program will open new doors for people who don’t have the resources they’d need to apply for every job they qualify for. Nelson said many of the job-hunters he’s talked to as a pastor just can’t afford to apply to all the employers who might be willing to hire them.

“That’s just the reality of it,” he said. “I’ve talked to people who say ‘if I call a place and they ask me to fax my resume, or drive it over, that’ll cost me X, Y or Z dollars.’ Here they can do all of that at no charge.”

Although Bethel is a black church, SHARE is being targeted to anyone looking for work – young and old; male and female; black, white and Hispanic.

“This is not about color; I’m hoping that this program will be able to reach out to whites, Asians, blacks, Hispanics – I think this will help a lot of people find work,” Nelson said. “They don’t have to be intimidated about not being able to get to Georgetown or Dover, and they don’t have to worry about being able to pay for faxes or postage.”

It’s already working – the first person who called him about SHARE, a week before the office even opened, was a white man who had lost his job and needed help to

“It’s already working and touching people, even before it opens,” Nelson said.

The church hopes to have more computers and more trained staffers available as soon as February if turnout is high. But if SHARE grows as Nelson plans, these services are only the beginning. Nelson wants to evolve it into “a larger job-readiness program, where I can have companies like Perdue and Target and Wal-Mart come into the community center on a regular basis, so people can talk to employers right here,” he said.

The center would also connect job-hunters with other programs other than the Department of Labor’s – like Dress For Success, a Wilmington group that provides formalwear for job-seekers who need to look their best for interviews.

Nelson, a former businessman who worked for Donald Trump’s Trump Organization before entering seminary, said running a SHARE program gives him the opportunity to use his experience in the secular world to better help the people of his community as a pastor. 

“I think it’s about self-esteem. People are out of work not because they’re dumb, or lazy, but because they don’t think they can put together a good resume, or do a good interview, and they fall through the cracks. I hope this program can begin to help them address that.

“With men unable to work, they don’t feel good about being the head of the household. They fall into a funk, into depression. Once we connect the dots, I think we will be able to reach them and give them the hand they need.”

The Bethel AME Community Center is located at 205 N.W. 4th St. For more information, call the church at 422-4704.