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My Story: Ceylin Brooks

When Ceylin Brooks decided to leave the Air Force after serving for six years, she moved from the Hurlburt Field Air Force installation in Northwest Florida to Tampa. The transition to civilian life was a little difficult, especially when it came to looking for a job. While searching to find a new position, a friend

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My Story: Mary Strickland

Mary Strickland’s difficulties with mental health began after high school. In 2007, she was a student at the local university working on a bachelor’s degree at the age of 18. Then, one day, she stopped going to class. Suddenly, she was too tired and worn out to even get dressed and drive. In 2010, she dropped out of school and, for the next five years, floundered. She had jobs in law offices and had been a pre-law major in college, but she was fired from each of them.

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My Story: Deneal Trueblood-Lynch

Everyone deserves the opportunity to experience the power of work. A disability, lack of education, poverty or criminal history should not stand in anyone’s way when seeking employment. But the reality is, many people in our communities face challenges to finding work as a result of their circumstances.

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My Story: LaTara Clark

LaTara became a mother at age 15, her freshman year of high school. She was scared but she also knew she had to do whatever it took to care for her child. “I couldn’t worry about education. I had to provide,” said LaTara. She dropped out of school and went to work.

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My Story: Alicia Murphy

Alicia Murphy came to Goodwill seeking her GED to provide new opportunities for her family. A young mother of two children, Alicia had dropped out of high school when she was 17 and had held several jobs including warehouse and waitressing positions, but what she really wanted was financial stability. Working in a warehouse was draining her both mentally and physically— and she knew she needed to further her education in order to kick start her career. Alicia had the drive to succeed, but like many people lacking education and work experience, she felt lost. She strived for independence, financial stability, and her own place to live.

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My Story: Guadalupe

At the encouragement of her close friend, Guadalupe moved from New York to Charlotte to find better opportunities and an improved lifestyle for herself and her 15-year-old daughter. Little did she know the COVID-19 pandemic would cause stay-at-home orders and hiring freezes just as they arrived.

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My Story: Krystian Davis

Krystain Davis has been working for nearly 20 years, but it wasn’t until recently that she uncovered her true passion.

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My Story: Fahad

As Fahad looks back on his life, hindsight is 2020. “When I was younger, I was uneducated, so I made mistakes,” he recalls. “I never put a lot of thought towards the things that I did. I was making mistake after mistake without even realizing I was making them, and it came back to bite me.”

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My Story: Eulalio Martinez

Eulalio Martinez traveled 1,500 miles to move to Wisconsin, but he did not have a job lined up to sustain him when he arrived. For several weeks, he lived in his truck before moving into a local homeless shelter. One day, he walked a block away to Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin’s Green Bay East Retail Store and Training Center, where he approached a career navigator named Dawn and asked for help. He said he was looking for someone to take a chance on him.

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My Story: Stephanie Richardson

In February 2020, Stephanie Richardson enrolled in the pharmacy technician program at Goodwill Industries of the Chesapeake. Initially attending class at the Goodwill’s training center in downtown Baltimore, her participation was halted on March 20, 2020, due to COVID-19. Remaining focused on education and training, Stephanie elected to take the National Retail Federation Business of Retail online course during the closure. Training remotely, she worked diligently and at her own pace to acquire the retail certification.

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My Story: Linda Sutton

Linda Sutton had a difficult upbringing and history of drug use as well as a criminal background. With the help of Goodwill Industries of the Columbia Willamette, she was able to turn her life around and is helping others to do the same.

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My Story: Gina Casteal

When Gina Casteal walked into Goodwill Industries of Fort Worth looking for job training, she and her four children were homeless. They had been bouncing around different living arrangements, sometimes living with friends and family, and even living out of her car for a period of time. Their home had been foreclosed on when she was unable to pay the mortgage, and she needed help to get back on her feet.

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