Abrahão's Story: The Eternal Volunteer
In the Sorocaba Brazil Employment Resource Center, Abrahão is a familiar face. He volunteers at the center whenever he can and has been affectionately called the “eternal volunteer” by his friends. Abrahão’s appreciation for the Church’s Employment Resource Services stems from the lessons he learned there during his own difficult time searching for a job.
When Abrahão faced six months of unemployment, he balanced his time taking a business administration course, helping at the center, and searching for jobs. One of the most interesting moments for Abrahão was realizing the importance of networking and relying on Church leaders for help.
When Abrahão was looking for employment, the area’s employment center director, Carlos Cerqueira talked with him about his efforts and asked how his job search was going.
Abrahão was frustrated. “I told him I didn’t know who else to talk to,” he said. “I felt I had already spoken with so many people. I didn’t know who else could help me find a job.”
Brother Cerqueira asked him, “Did you already talk to your friends and leaders at church?”
Abrahão responded that he had talked to everyone and didn’t know why he couldn’t find any more contacts.
Brother Cerqueira inquired again, “Have you already spoken with the president of your quorum?”
Although Abrahão had spoken with several of his church leaders, he realized he hadn’t talked to the elders quorum president yet. The next week at a church meeting, Abrahão was talking to a friend about his employment efforts when his elder’s quorum president overheard and joined the conversation.
“You’re not working?” he asked Abrahão in surprise.
Abrahão responded he wasn’t.
“And you’re just telling me now?” the president asked.
The elder’s quorum president quickly gave Abrahão a few places and people to contact about potential job openings. Abrahão began networking again and although none of the leads turned out, they gave Abrahão new ideas on connections for networking. He learned that his resources were never exhausted because he always had other people he could contact about job opportunities. He also learned the importance of involving church leaders in his search for employment.
“It doesn’t matter who it is, we just need to talk with everyone and ask them for help,” Abrahão said.
After six months of job searching and networking, Abrahão secured a job doing finances for a company. He still volunteers at the center whenever he can. He even spends his lunch break there a few times a week just so he can help those searching for jobs and seeking to take the Career Workshop. He just wants to help them to realize their opportunities as well.
Abrahão finished his two-year university course in administration. With his new job and additional training, he feels he has the security and financial support to do his postgraduate studies in mechanical engineering.
“I was counseled once to remember that unemployment is just a small moment and one day it will pass,” he said. “It will get better, so you just have to be strong and faithful and always thank Heavenly Father.”