Dante wanted a better life. He first came to Goodwill in 2006 but was not ready to take advantage of the opportunities that were offered to him. Because of a traumatic brain injury, Dante has minor paralysis in his right arm and leg and a slight speech impediment.
Dante returned to Goodwill in 2013, and enrolled in the Job Readiness class. He was very grateful for the second chance. After completing the class, he enrolled in and successfully completed the Transitional Work Program.
Dante obtained employment at a Goodwill store, and is studying to get his GED.
My desire to have a better life and become a positive role model for my children motivated me to come to Goodwill. I am very grateful for the opportunities I was provided.
James needed a second chance. He was released from prison after serving 13 years, and didn’t know where to begin. He was worried that finding a job may be impossible. While incarcerated, he attended a Goodwill Job Readiness class.
Upon release, James started on the job training as a custodian in Goodwill’s Transitional Work program. He was quick to do any task assigned to him, and was eager to learn new skills. He also talked to the younger participants about his past mistakes and helped them overcome challenges they faced. In less than 30 days, James was offered another position to learn new skills.
After successfully completing the Transitional Work program, James applied for a position at Goodwill and was hired immediately.
I have spent over 30 years of my life incarcerated, and was told I would not make it in society. I wanted to prove to myself that I can make a change in place of deteriorating in the streets.
Linwood was looking for a job and confidence. He was worried that because he was an older worker with a criminal background and gaps in his employment history no one would hire him.
After completing Goodwill’s four week Job Readiness classes, he enrolled in the Transitional Work program. The Transitional Work Program provides on-the-job training opportunities to individuals with minimal or no work experience. Participants receive hands-on experience at Goodwill’s retail and administrative locations that help them transition into the competitive work environment.
Linwood excelled in the program and was able to find a job at Goodwill’s Recycling Center as a Material Handler.
I was lacking confidence in myself when I came to Goodwill and I didn’t think that I would be able to find employment. But after going through the Transitional Work program, I became very confident in my abilities.
Margarita faced several challenges. She moved to Baltimore from Puerto Rico, and felt that being over 55 would make employers reluctant to hire her. She was also concerned about how she would navigate interviews because Spanish was her native language.
She was referred to Goodwill’s Buena Alianza program for assistance in finding employment. Buena Alianza was designed to provide job readiness, case management and placement services to the Latino population.
Margarita was able to obtain employment as an assistant manager at a Goodwill store. She has since been promoted to manager and continues to work on her knowledge of the English language. She also advocates for the program and refers other individuals facing similar challenges.
I like to lead by example and have always been distinguished by my determination, courage and compassion. These qualities have allowed me to continue being successful in my professional career, even outside of my home country of Puerto Rico.
Markeara had a child to support. She was 16 with a newborn, and had recently dropped out of high school. She went to Goodwill’s Waverly Family Support Center looking for a future.
At the Waverly Family Center, she completed the “Nurturing Series Parenting Group” as well as Maryland Family Network’s “Parent Leadership Training.” Her son was able to join her every step of the way as he was involved in the childhood services offered at the Center.
With an upbeat personality and ambitious attitude, Markeara showed remarkable leadership and advancement while also positively influencing her peers. She received her high school diploma in June 2013 a year ahead of her former classmates. She is excited to begin classes at Sojourner Douglas College in the spring. Most important, she has also found employment at an elderly care facility.
I was 16 and pregnant with a dream and a purpose. Waverly Family Center helped birth my dream and now I am on the road to success.
Melanie needed a fresh start. She came to Goodwill looking for a job. She was having trouble finding work and felt that having a criminal record was a tremendous obstacle in her search. She was on the verge of losing her home and had two young children to worry about.
After working with Goodwill’s placement team, Melanie was given an opportunity to enter a new career in telemarketing. She impressed the hiring managers and was offered a job on the spot.
She has been able to maintain her housing, come off government assistance and now enjoys spending quality time with her family.
The job could not have come at a better time. With my new income, I can help feed my family and provide for them. I want to thank Goodwill for helping me find my new career.
Ryan wanted an opportunity to succeed. He came to Goodwill with a less than perfect background and limited work history. He was looking for a strong work environment.
He entered Goodwill’s Transitional Work program and started working part-time as a custodian. While on the job, he went above and beyond his duties, not leaving an unclean area in the store. He also filled in for others when the store was short-staffed and learned how to process goods.
Ryan now works full-time in a Goodwill retail store.
I am very excited to be a part of the Goodwill family. I am thankful for the opportunities Goodwill has provided me and I look forward to my future.