Meet Christie Caswell, PCLC’s Grant Writer and Assessment Specialist

Sep 22, 2022

When Christie Caswell plays the popular ice-breaker Two Truths and a Lie, she usually wins. Her one unusual truth is that she’s a certified crematorium operator. While this one truth can be borderline shocking to some, it takes a lot to surprise her. With an easy laugh, she shares that “Let’s say I’ve had a lot of life experiences.”

Christie brought those many lessons learned to her post as PCLC’s Grant Writer and Assessment Specialist. She started with – or rather came back to – PCLC in July 2022. Her first work with the organization was in 2017 with a pilot call center program. Her initial contact with PCLC was 2008 timeframe in her position as Program Manager for PA CareerLink with the South Central Workforce Investment Board, overseeing the eight counties surrounding Harrisburg.

“Perry County Literacy Council, well, they’ve always been my people,” she explains when asked what drew her to the organization a second time. “PCLC’s model was exactly how we wanted all our CareerLink programs to work.”

For Christie, it comes down to the way services are delivered. There’s a culture of caring and support that translates into a personalized program that is focused 100% on the individual. So instead of being told, here’s the one thing that we can offer to help you, a PCLC client is offered a range of services that will help him or her succeed.

Another draw for Christie is that PCLC’s approach makes sure the right people have what they need – no more, no less — to put the nonprofit’s limited funds to their best use. “If a client has a need that we can serve, but we also know there’s another resource for them, we’ll steer them in that direction,” she offers.

As PCLC’s grant writer, she’s tasked with finding funding sources for ongoing and new efforts, such as services for ex-offenders. When an offender becomes an ex-offender, they have three critical needs – housing, employment, and transportation. “PCLC wants to better serve this and other harder to serve population, so I’m looking for grants, for example, that can solve the transportation issue,” she says. “We want to actually begin work with the person pre-release, so they are connected with a place to live and have a couple of job interviews lined up.”

Taking on new challenges is nothing new for Christie. After earning her BS in Business Administration from Millersville University, she’s held positions in workforce development, local government, sales, emergency services, and housing. Out of all her previous positions, her best piece of advice comes from her work in emergency services. She says with a laugh, “Never do anything you’d need to explain to the EMTs! MAKE GOOD CHOICES!”

About PCLC

The Perry County Literacy Council is dedicated to delivering the programs and services that impact Perry County, providing a One Stop site in Newport where Adult Education and CareerLink® partners are accessible at a single point of contact.

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We believe that all Perry Countians should have access to services, education and credentials that will support self-sustaining wages. If you are currently facing challenges, please reach out to us. If we can’t help directly, we can direct you to the right resource.

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