Monthly Archives: June 2014

Flower Power

Hamburgers grilling on the barbecue, warm and sunny days, children laughing as they run through the sprinkler… summer has finally arrived in Edmonton! We know it only lasts a short while, but that just means we all enjoy it as much as we can!

Last week, The DECSA community took advantage of the summer weather by purchasing, digging, planting, and watering some beautiful flowers! It was hard work, but the end result was definitely worth it as we now have a variety of colours brightening up our flowerbed.

We would like to thank Kuhlmann’s Greenhouse for helping us “beautify” our space by providing us with gorgeous annuals, plus a discount on the perennials.  We would also like to thank the City of Edmonton for giving us two big planters to put at the end of our pathway. And of course, none of this would have been possible without our Community Relations department, who organized everything. Thank you so much!


Go Eskimos!

Most Edmontonians, whether you enjoy football or not, have probably already heard that tomorrow marks the kick-off of the Edmonton Eskimos season. Many fans have been counting down the days, ready to cheer on the green and gold on their home turf. But most people probably don’t know that DECSA staff and participants will be a part of the Eskimo season this year!

Starting June 13th, we will be volunteering at all Eskimo home games selling ice cream to hungry fans during the summer season, and hot chocolate once cooler weather hits. We will also be selling ice cream at all the Edmonton Women’s FIFA World Cup games!

This venture will give our participants experience serving customers, handling cash, managing inventory, and working with food, all of which can be added to a resume. Furthermore, it gives staff and participants alike a chance to get out into the community, meet new people, and share some Edmontonian spirit!

So, if you’re at the game cheering for the Eskimos (or the BC Lions- we won’t judge), be sure to stop by, say hello, and maybe grab an ice cream, or two!

Check out Twitter (@DECSAEdmonton) on game day to see where we are located!ball-220047_640


Interested in volunteering? Sign up here for more information:

Cooking with Basic Shelf

basic shelf

“What I liked about Basic Shelf was the opportunity to enjoy instruction and quality fellowship with other participants. I also love the cookbook! I still use it to this day.”

One of the perks about being a participant in our Transitions Program is the Basic Shelf cooking program. Every Tuesday, clients meet at a local church and spend the afternoon preparing food, chatting, and most of all, having fun! The recipes come from the Basic Shelf cookbook, which features appetizers, entrées, and dessert items, all using nutritious, low-cost ingredients. Before class, participants choose the menu, and a staff member buys the ingredients. Afterwards, the food is divided up amongst the class, and everyone gets to take their culinary creations home. Participants are entitled to a $250 grocery trip of ingredients used in the Basic Shelf cookbook after completing 12 weeks of workshops.

You can find out more information about the Transitions Program here. You can also call the Transitions intake line at: (780) 474-2500.

I did the interview…Now what?


Many people think that once the interview is over and done with, it’s time to sit back, relax, and play the waiting game. I know that I have have made that mistake before. I did really well on a phone interview and was brought in for a second interview. I was convinced that the job was mine and even began apartment hunting in that area. You can imagine how crushed I was when I found out that I hadn’t been selected for the position. When I look back, I realise that there were some things I could have done after the interview to try and push the odds in my favour. Here are some suggestions on ways you can improve your chances of landing the job:

Before you leave the interview, make sure you ask when they expect to call the person they have selected for the job, if it wasn’t previously discussed. DO follow up with the hiring manager after the interview. This shows that you are still interested in the position itself. Even better, if the interviewers are having trouble choosing between you and someone else, your continued interest could tip the balance. That being said, DON’T make a nuisance out of yourself by continuously pestering the hiring manager about when they are going to make a decision.  Also, if they ask you to not make any follow-up contact, respect their decision.

DO contact the hiring manager in the way they asked. If they asked you to contact them using email, do so. If they didn’t say how to contact them, stick with the system you had before the interview. DON’T contact them using a home phone number, unless specifically told to. Personal life and professional life should be kept separate.

DO send a personalized thank you note to each person on the interviewing panel within twenty four hours after the interview. You want the employer to know that you appreciate their time. Handwritten, typed and emailed notes are acceptable. DON’T go overboard by sending flowers or gifts. The interviewer should feel appreciated, not bribed.

It is important that you DO keep job searching in the meantime, even if you are convinced the job is yours. You might have aced the interview, but someone else could have too. DON’T put all of your eggs into one basket . It’s always good to keep your options open while waiting for a response. Who knows, you might find an even better position!

DO accept rejection graciously. The last thing you want to do is burn bridges with a potential employer. You never know when another position might become available in the organization that you may be a good fit for. DON’T take it personally. It doesn’t mean that you “failed”, it just means there is another job just waiting for you.

For those of you looking for a place to job search, DECSA has a Community Resource Centre, which has computers, printers, fax machines, telephones, coffee and free wi-fi. We are open to the public Monday to Friday from 8-4, and are located at 11515-71 Street. For more information, please call 780-474-2500.