Innovative Fund Creates Local Jobs, Expands Goodwill’s Mission

GMJCS Loan Fund 200Through the operation of Goodwill’s well-known donated goods retail stores, Goodwill® provides jobs and career training — services that are fundamental to our mission. Each year, tens of thousands of people are employed and millions receive mission services.
To accelerate the creation of jobs and expansion of mission-related services, in 2013 Goodwill Industries International began offering a financing opportunity to enable more local Goodwill organizations to access the funds they need to improve existing sites and to open new stores and donations centers. Known as Goodwill Mission and Job Creation Services (GMJCS), this loan fund provides financing to local Goodwill member organizations on beneficial terms so they can do more and do it faster than might otherwise be possible.

In the three years since its creation, GMJCS has loaned $8.7 million to 12 local Goodwill organizations which have opened 22 new retail stores and 12 donation centers.  Together, these Goodwill members created 564 new jobs with a combined annual earnings of $11.2 million. So far, the revenue from these new retail facilities has funded services to help 7,257 people find jobs outside of Goodwill – jobs where people are collectively earning $121 million a year. While jobs are essential, a job alone is not enough: 262 people employed and served by these Goodwill members earned credentials to support career growth, 1,609 improved their financial wellbeing by increasing savings, and 1,023 reduced their debt.

A store that was funded by GMJCS now employs individuals including John, a former Marine who was twice deployed to Iraq. More than 10 years ago, John fell 25 feet off a cliff while hiking in California. Because of a resulting brain injury, John had to re-learn how to talk, walk, read, write and feed himself. More recently, though John was ready to work, employers were impatient with his disability, and his hours were routinely cut. At the new Goodwill store in his area, he got the chance he needed to succeed at work.

John is just one of the many individuals who are benefiting from expanding Goodwill retail and mission operations. In Mobile, AL, Goodwill Easter Seals of the Gulf Coast used GMJCS funds to improve existing stores and to open two additional stores, resulting in 22 new jobs. In Colorado, Discover Goodwill of Southern & Western Colorado Springs is planning to open up to four new sites within the next five years, and expects to create 100 new jobs.

Goodwill has helped millions of people overcome barriers to employment and get on a path of sustainable careers, and the GMJCS Job Creation Loan Fund helps Goodwill organizations advance that impact further and faster.  Its impact is also felt in the lives of local individuals who might not have otherwise had access to the support they need.

For more information on the GMJCS loan fund please email me.