My Story: Irene Hernandez

Goodwill® is celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month and recognizing the impact and significant contributions of the Hispanic community as well as their unique cultures and heritage. Your donations and purchases help make stories like Irene’s possible.

Irene Hernandez was unemployed for 15 years while she cared for her three children at home. Then, as soon as grandchildren came into her life, she looked after them too. Now that her daughter can care for her own children, Irene decided to make positive changes in her life.

Unfortunately, Irene’s marriage was proving unstable. She realized the importance of learning new job skills and getting back into the workforce to provide for herself in the event her marriage failed. She lacked confidence in others and was unsure who she could actually trust.

Irene learned about Goodwill’s Digital Career Accelerator® through a flier she saw while visiting the library. She asked the library staff about the program and immediately completed the interest form. Irene enrolled in the digital skills training program with a goal of learning something new and enhancing her already existing knowledge.

When she enrolled in the digital skills training, a Goodwill career navigator worked with her and provided community resources that greatly helped Irene and her family. The career navigator also shed some light on Goodwill’s social programs for job seekers, such as the GoodRX pharmaceutical card for her daughter. Irene was also eligible for the Social Impact program due to a previous domestic violence encounter that landed her in jail. She has taken several certification courses focusing on Spanish translation.

Irene earned a Basic Digital Skills Training certificate. She is now enrolled in the Skills to Succeed Academy, also operated by Goodwill.

“Without the help of this program, I would have not succeeded,” Irene says. “I am grateful for obtaining certificates to add to my résumé. The staff kept me going by showing me that I, too, can be successful, and that helped me keep my confidence level up.”