ROCKVILLE, MD — In 2014, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 21.2 million men and women were veterans. For Goodwill Industries International and its 158 local agencies across the United States, each and every day is an occasion to honor America’s veterans and military families. As the nation’s leading provider of job- and skills-training programs, Goodwill is committed to helping people who have served our nation. In communities throughout the country, Goodwill provides holistic programs and services to veterans, enabling them to re-enter civilian life as seamlessly as possible.
“Goodwill is dedicated to helping people who face challenges to finding employment. Our programs and services for veterans prepare them to compete in an ever-changing, competitive marketplace,” said Jim Gibbons, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. “Our returning service members have valuable skills and experiences and are eager to rejoin the workforce. We help them to translate their military experience into civilian experience and we are committed to making more employers aware of this valuable pool of talent.”
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs estimates that each year, more than a quarter of a million service men and women return to civilian life. For many, the transition is a difficult one, whether due to physical and emotional disabilities, a skill set that is mismatched for the current labor market, or a lack of access to health care, child care and housing.
Goodwill understands that successful reintegration is a team effort. That’s why Goodwill provides a variety of services to veterans and military family members to ensure their specific challenges are addressed. In April of 2011, Goodwill for America’s Heroes began as a commitment to the White House’s Joining Forces Initiative to serve and hire veterans and military family members. Goodwill programs such as Operation: GoodJobs, a program made possible with funding from the Walmart Foundation, serve veterans and military families, equipping them with the tools they need to earn employment and ensure long-term financial wellness. Additionally, Goodwill is also joining with the Walmart Foundation to launch Greenlight A Vet, which is a campaign to help create visible and actionable national support for America’s veterans and their families. Anyone can greenlight a veteran by hiring one or helping one find a job, volunteering and serving with a veterans group, starting a mentor/mentee relationship with a returning veteran, raising awareness on social media, or simply signaling support by changing a porch light to green.
Cornelius Taylor, a post 9/11 veteran who served in Iraq, received help from Goodwill Industries of Fort Worth in Texas. He learned how to translate his military experience into a civilian resume, and received assistance with interviewing clothes and transportation. Goodwill connected him with many employers who were interested in hiring him, and he accepted a full-time job with Charter Communications as an advanced cable technician.
Goodwill also recognizes the unique challenges that women veterans face as they reintegrate into civilian life. Since June 2013, Goodwill agencies have hired 355 women veterans, provided services to 8,923 women veterans, and placed 1,423 women veterans in careers in their communities.
“Veterans recently reintegrating into civilian life or those who have served our nation face unique challenges to entering the workforce once they return,” said Jim Gibbons, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. “Goodwill recognizes this and helps them translate their valuable military skills and experiences. We are committed to making more employers aware of this valuable pool of talent.”
In 2011, Goodwill made a commitment to hiring veterans and military families. Today, Goodwill continues its commitment to serving and hiring veterans and military family members. As of September 2015, Goodwill has hired 3,706 and served 185,441 veterans and family members.