When the COVID-19 pandemic shut down much of the United States early in 2020, Toni Meador found herself among the millions who were suddenly without work. Like many, a pandemic-related layoff was not the only challenge she was facing. Toni was working to recover from identity theft and leaving an abusive marriage. She did not have transportation and lacked other supports, such as housing to keep herself and her son safe.
This past year has been one of transition for Patrick Curtis. After working for his family business for nearly 10 years, he discovered Goodwill’s Careers in Technology (CiT) program in the fall of 2019. At that time, he viewed a Goodwill® mission moment that was shared at a board of directors meeting for the YMCA Express at Gainsboro. Not only did the mission moment spark Patrick’s interest, but it also provided him with the realization that he could have the opportunity to work where his passion lies — in information technology.
In October of 2019, Della Turner found herself out of work. Everything had changed since she last searched for employment, and companies that were hiring required skills that she did not learn in her line of work. She knew it was time to update her skills. The Mississippi Department of Employment Security referred Della Goodwill Industries of Mississippi (Ridgeland) WIN Job Center, where she enrolled in digital skills training.
A native of Liberia, Wesley Chenoweth is pursuing the American entrepreneurial dream, and credits his experience with Goodwill of North Georgia’s GoodBiz program for helping him find the path to success. Goodwill of North Georgia awarded his company, Grizzly Delivery, LLC, with its 2020 Micro-Business of the Year award in recognition of his firm’s achievements.
Veteran Larry Dominguez had been out of work for the past year and on unemployment benefits when the COVID-19 pandemic temporarily closed many businesses in Las Vegas. The perfect storm impacted Larry, causing him to feel depressed about being unemployed, under skilled and without income.
I walked through the Goodwill doors with a high school education, limited computer proficiency, and often could be quiet and reserved. I always knew I had a passionate spirit and love to help others, but I needed assistance on becoming more engaging with the general public in a workforce setting.
Weston Orf had recently been laid off from his former employer a few months before coming to Goodwill®. After initially learning about Goodwill’s digital skills training through a family member, he visited his local Goodwill organization, Discover Goodwill of Southern and Western Colorado, and enrolled in CompTIA Security+ training.
Robert Aronson proudly served his country as a Combat Medic with the Navy Seals. Despite this impressive accomplishment, the last 10 years have been difficult for him. After he lost his job, he was unable to find other work and slowly fell into a deep depression. A few years ago, he was referred to Goodwill Southern Nevada from the Veteran’s Administration.
Prior to enrolling in the digital skills program at Goodwill Industries of Upstate/Midlands South Carolina (Greenville, SC), Annette Cohen was at a critical juncture in her job search. As she assessed opportunities, she found that the she was either over- or under-qualified for many of the roles she was interested in. For support with her job search, Cohen went to her local Goodwill Job Connection center.