The book, which was released in mid-May, is the result of Saunders’ 14 years of working directly with people who lost jobs, homes, financial freedom and hope.
“When the economy crashed in 2009, we realized that our old teaching methods (at Papa’s Pantry) were not working,” Saunders said. “We did some analysis of the workplace and realized there were still jobs out there.”
“21st Century Keys to Employment” is about finding employment in today’s marketplace that Saunders says has never been more competitive. In most major American cities, according to Saunders, approximately 1,000 people are applying for each living wage job.
According to Saunders, the book guides readers through the steps necessary to stand out from the competition to land that next job, but noted that it took close to two years of writing and rewriting to make the book work.
“In a class, it’s easy to look at people’s faces and realize if they are understanding the material or if they have questions,” Saunders said. “But when I was writing the book, I knew I wouldn’t be able to read their faces on the spot. As I started to piece it together, I made changes to make it the best it could be.”
Recently, Morgan and Holly Hill of Woodstock hosted a book-signing for Saunders and her at-the-time newly released book, which included Cherokee Rep. Charlice Byrd, a friend of Saunders who was able to attend.
“I was honored to be a part of the book-signing and (am) proud to know Lynne,” Byrd said. “It’s not an every day occurrence that a friend and neighbor publishes a book. She is one of the most sincere, giving and compassionate persons I know. I believe Lynne has a special calling and does a tremendous service to our community.”
Saunders’ book arose nearly 14 years after she founded Papa’s Pantry, which is a multi-faceted Christian Assistance program that ministers to the whole family in numerous ways, not just as a food pantry.
“(Papa’s Pantry) is a holistic program designed to work with families at their immediate point of need,” Saunders wrote on the pantry’s website, www.papaspantry.com.
Her inspiration for the pantry — which originated in the basement of her home while she also worked a full-time job — came about after she returned from a mission trip to India, where she was in constant view of poverty.
“When I was on my way home from the airport and was telling my husband about the trip, I noticed a billboard sign advertising Rolex watches and then all of the low-income housing,” Saunders said. “It struck me that America has so much wealth yet so much need and I thought, ‘Why isn’t this working?’”
Papa’s Pantry has two locations: the main office in Woodstock and a satellite location in Canton. The Woodstock location also contains an education center known as “The Master’s Training Center,” which opened in the fall of 2009.
Saunders’ book is available at Papa’s Pantry, Yawn’s Books in Canton, and Book Browsers in Woodstock according to her website, www.lynnesaunders.com, as well as at Barnes and Noble and online at
Amazon.com. The book costs $21.99, with 10 percent of the proceeds benefiting Papa’s Pantry.
The pantry does not accept walk-ins because its goal “to get to know the families they are working with,” according to its website.
The Woodstock location of Papa’s Pantry is at 6551 Commerce Parkway, Suite 200, Woodstock; the Canton location is at 500 Crisler St. in Canton.
To schedule an appointment with Papa’s Pantry or if you have any questions, call (770) 591-4730. Additional information about the pantry can be found at www.papaspantry.com.