Job candidates meet with employers during Bay County Job Fair

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PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - This year, the Bay County Job Fair saw the most activity ever in its 32 years of existence.

"So last week, we had only about 77 employers signed up and within three days, the first days of this week, it jumped up to 93 and actually this morning we added our 94th, so yes, the largest one we've had," said CareerSource Gulf Coast's Communication Coordinator Brittany Rock.

Hundreds of job seekers roamed up and down the aisles of potential employers.

"I like to try different things, and you just need to have two things in front of your belt," said job seeker Samantha Boyd.

Boyd already works for Bay District Schools, but she says to make ends meet, she needs another job on her plate.

"I'm just coming to get something to help offset my income because one job is not enough for me," said Boyd.

For many job seekers like Boyd, they saw options they hadn't seen before.

While the opportunities are catching their eyes, they also have to get noticed by an employer ready to hire them.

"Since the storm, we've had officers unfortunately that have had to get displaced and had to move, and I've got some vacancies that we're needing to fill with quality employees," said Florida Department of Corrections Sergeant George Lee.

"I know a lot of people are in desperate need of employees right now, especially us. Because we're expanding, nobody has any companies left to hire," said owner of Panhandle Cleaning Solutions Rachel Dinse.

Boyd says she sees the prices in the area only going up.

"Everything has went up, gas, the cost of living, and you're not making the money, everything is going up, but you're not making the money to fulfill the cost that is going up," said Boyd.

Hurricane Michael has made this year's job fair even more important.

"It's important for our community because we got to help them get back to work, you know, start getting their lives back together," said Rock.

If you need assistance finding employment, CareerSource Gulf Coast is temporarily located at C.C. Washington in Panama City.