Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Inc.
About the Foundation
The Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation, Inc. was organized and incorporated in 2014. The
Foundation is a non-profit corporation organized to manage and distribute funds and resources to
further the development of the community through activities that are exclusively charitable, scientific or
educational. The Foundation is responsible for the creation and support of the Harry Schickling
Scholarship; the Annual Job Fair; is a collaborative partner in the Career Internship Program; and a
partner in the newly formed Summer Career Camps.
Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce Foundation Mission
To develop, promote, and manage economic development, workforce development, and educational
opportunities and initiatives throughout Bedford County and the Town of Bedford, Virginia with the
ultimate objective of enhancing the business climate and workforce throughout the region.
In an effort to promote school/business partnerships and educate our business members and the public
about the role education plays in improving the business climate and quality of life in our region, the
Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce participates in a number of collaborative initiatives with Bedford
County Public Schools.
The Career Internship Program allows students to participate in area internships in an effort to grow a
healthy workforce. The Bedford Area Chamber of Commerce is proud to support the Internship program
by assisting with recruiting businesses in our area to host student interns and through grant
opportunities to assist with funding students’ transportation needs and program materials. The
Chamber places a great deal of its efforts on the development of a strong workforce and educating our
students on the opportunities that are available to them.
21st Century Career Camps allow high school students the opportunity to explore different career areas
with a hands-on experience in areas such as manufacturing, healthcare, agriculture, culinary arts, STEM
and more. This program helps to promote job creation, economic development, and growth among
youth while strengthening relationships between our business and educational communities. The
Bedford Area Chamber creates opportunities for business members to actively participate in this
program through activities and presentations that will assist students in developing skills, confidence
and experience needed to be actively employed.
The Annual Job Fair provides area businesses with the opportunity to promote their job openings and
career opportunities to the community. Attracting more than 300 job seekers each year, this program
assists businesses with the need to attract a trained and skilled workforce.
Future programs include the development of a new Youth Leadership Program and the redesign of our
once popular, Career Exploration Day. The Youth Leadership Program is designed to develop the
academic, social and life skills of area youth beginning in their sophomore year of high school. Students
will have the opportunity for interaction with their peers, community based organizations, institutions
of higher education, and professionals from local business and industry.
Career Exploration Day is designed to expose middle school students to careers through onsite
orientations and hands-on experiences at area places of business. It provides them the opportunity to
explore career options that they might not otherwise be exposed to. The goal is to enhance workforce
development by exposing students to opportunities at an early age; giving them a head start in their
plans for completing their education.
3 Ways to get involved!
- VOLUNTEER or participate in an education or workforce development program or the Workforce Development Committee.
- ADVOCATE for our initiatives at your workplace and in the community.
- INVEST an individual gift or sponsorship donation from your business.