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The Hive transforms hot spot into job fair

Posted at 12:08 PM, Jan 18, 2016
and last updated 2016-01-18 13:11:10-05

Normally, The Hive is one of many hotspots in the Old Market.

But on this Sunday afternoon, it turned into a job fair.

“We had about 50 to 55 people displaced employees between Nouvelle Eve, M's and Market House,” says Jake Gardner, owner of The Hive. “So we figured the best way to get everyone back to work is to put as many employers and employees in the same room. 

On Jan. 9, a fire ravaged a historic building between 11th and Howard streets. Livelihoods were taken from employees who worked below the condominiums and apartments.

For these displaced workers, the fair, held  Jan. 17., could not come at a better time.

"It's been kind of [chaotic],” says Abby Flek, a former manager and server at The Market House. “I've just been mostly worried about our staff and servers…it's a cash job. Your tips are your money. We get zero dollar paychecks...so just getting them placed quickly."

Gardner, also co-owner at The Market House, says he hopes employers and employees find a career-worthy match.

Employers say they are ready to assist.

Most of the kitchen staff from M’s Pub and The Market House have been hired by other restaurants, Flek says.

"Being able to just lend a helping hand in whatever way possible we could just to support the community ultimately – that was probably the biggest thing for us,” says Javier Macias, an assistant general manager at Hilton Garden Inn.

The community's outpouring of support has not gone unnoticed for these former employees.

"I think it's really extraordinary. I've said over and over: you know, Omaha, is a definitely a good city for this to have happened in,” says Flek. “Everyone is just coming together. It's such a tight-knit community.”