Job seekers dressed in professional attire at their visit to the Boys & Girls Club in Brandon during ECHO’s (Emergency Care Help Organization) fourth annual Job Fair on April 13. Through this free event the first 25 candidates received a portfolio, assistance with their resumes and more.

In September of 2015, ECHO held their first job fair. ECHO does this twice a year, once in the spring and the other in the fall. The mission at ECHO would be to assist residents of Eastern Hillsborough County in crisis with emergency food, clothing and offer access to life-stabilizing programs and resources. Since 1987, it helped more than 180,000 Brandon area residents with food and clothing. Bank of America gave ECHO a $25,000 grant for the Job for Jobs program. that will go towards their workforce development, which caters to its Job for Job program.

“The $25,000 grant from Bank of America will go towards our workforce development,” said Sharmaine Burr, ECHO Director of Social Services.

This job fair had 169 in attendance with more than 30 employers and service agencies. Individuals searching for a job could speak with employers from the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, Hillsborough County Supervisor of Elections, Bank of America and much more. It gave the job seekers an opportunity to network and learn about these employers and service agencies in hopes to land employment. The sponsors of the job fair included Twin Creeks Assisted Living and Memory Care, Boys & Girls Club, Braille Works and more.

“I came to the ECHO Job Fair because I need a job and like the fact that I can talk with employers face-to-face,” Nataly Cabrera said.

“The ECHO Job Fair seemed well put together and it did not gear towards one sector,” said Melody Fuller, with the Job for Job program at ECHO. She started with them in 2016.

Join ECHO and their next job fair, which will be held on September 14.

For more information, visit It is located at 507 N. Parsons Ave. in Brandon. Hours vary. Call 685-0935.

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Tatiana Ortiz is a freelance writer with the Osprey Observer Newspaper. She began as an intern here in 2010 and has been writing since. Tatiana graduated from the University of South Florida in 2015. She earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications with a concentration in Public Relations. In her free time, Tatiana enjoys photography, biking and being with her family.