The Georgia Department of Labor is stepping up its efforts to get teens off the couch and into the work force this summer.
It's Stephanie Irvin's first day at her new summer job with the Boys and Girls Club, a job she wasn't sure she'd ever have.
Stephanie says, "It's really hard because you can fill out a lot of applications and they will not call you back. I had several interviews, but this is the one I got."
It was the same story for James Harrell. Although he knew he wanted a summer job, finding one proved quite difficult.
James says, “The reason I wanted to get a job was to help buy my school stuff. I just didn't want to sit around and play all summer. I just wanted to make myself useful."
These teens say it's not that they didn't want to work; job opportunities were simply limited until the Georgia Department of Labor stepped in and funded the creation of 20 summer jobs for teens in the south Georgia area.
Department of Labor officials say the student summer help work program is a positive for both the student and the club. Student helpers like Tiffany get a chance to earn extra money, while the club benefits from the extra help during the summertime.
Melba Barber, Boys and Girls Club Unit Director, says, "We're going to work with them on the responsibility of taking the time out to check in and check out."
It’s giving these young adults valuable work experience they can apply in their future careers. Organizers say each teen will work 32 hours a week for six weeks. They will earn $5.15 per hour.