SAN ANTONIO - Local nonprofits are responding to the steady flow of illegal immigrant children coming to Texas.
The St. Peter-St. Joseph's Children's Home is holding a job fair Thursday in the effort to hire 50-60 people to facilitate the addition of 56 extra beds for young people who have crossed the border.
The nonprofit has a contract with the federal government's Office of Refugee Resettlement, and with thousands crossing the border, there's a growing need.
"We're hiring a bunch of day care workers and direct-care workers," said St. PJ's Children's Home CEO James Castro. "We're hiring case managers, therapists, and you need the support staff. So we're hiring cooks and maintenance folks as well."
Staff at St. PJ's try to help children heal from the trauma they've been through.
Many of the job applicants said they felt called by that mission.
"(We're) trying to help them find a place to live, feel safe, you know?" said Carlos Ramirez, who was applying Thursday morning. "I think it would be very gratifying."
"For me, it's God's calling," said Luis Garcia. "I've always worked with young people, with children. At my local church, I volunteered a lot, working with youth in crisis."
The positions are temporary for now, but St. PJ's officials hope to open a second shelter and make the jobs permanent.
Some say this has always been a need for this community.
"Being part of the San Antonio community, I feel like we all have been affected by that for our lifetime, so it's nice to be able to reach out to those children," said Christina Cervera, who was also applying for a job.
The job fair runs until 4 p.m. Thursday at 919 Mission Road. Applicants are asked to bring their photo ID, Social Security card or work verification, and come ready for an interview. St. PJ's are looking for bilingual applicants.
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