SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Savannah Mayor Eddie DeLoach says he needs more employers to offer summer jobs to the city's teenagers.
"We've got plenty of kids for jobs and now we need plenty of employers with job opportunities," Mayor DeLoach said.
He is calling on area businesses to participate in his Summer 500 Program. This is the third year for the program which involves offering summer employment to juniors and seniors in high school.
"It's to get the soft skills and the skills they need to become a working citizen in our community," Mayor DeLoach said.
Before these teens clock-in, they'll participate in a week-long session to learn about job expectations and finances. Junior Achievement is in charge of supplying the material for the class.
"We'll talk about personal finances and what a paycheck will look like," Junior Achievement's Director of Development, Robert Grant, said.
Right now, the program has around 175 job opportunities available. But the mayor is looking for an additional 200 positions by next month.
"Starting Monday, I'll be calling and talking to different people to see if we can't rustle up these jobs," he said.
The mayor says the program is already seeing some benefits. According to Mayor Deloach, juvenile crime went down 21 percent after the first year of the program. Last year, juvenile crime fell an additional 17 percent.
"Mom and Dad always said the idle mind is the devil's workshop, so they always had a job for us. That's what we want to do for our kids out here," the mayor said.
For more information on Summer 500, click here.