Local Goodwill® Receives National Recognition for Excellence in Family Strengthening

Award Recognizes a Family-Inclusive Approach to Promote Economic Self-Sufficiency
Kalamazoo, MI Goodwill Industries of Southwestern Michigan is one of three Goodwill agencies nationwide selected to receive a 2014 Goodwill Family Strengthening Center of Excellence Award. The agency is being recognized for a corporate philosophy and forward-thinking practices that promote economic self-sufficiency with a family-inclusive approach. The Goodwill works with its program participants as well as its employees and their families to asses individual socioeconomic, education and training needs to help people learn how to manage their money and save for the future.
“Goodwill believes that financial education paired with stable employment can open doors to long-term economic stability for individuals and families,” said Jim Gibbons, president and CEO of Goodwill Industries International. “Goodwill Industries of Southwester Michigan has been addressing the critical needs of families by providing financial literacy, career development programs and support services for youth and families with disabilities and other disadvantages.”
Through its Financial Opportunities Center, Kalamazoo’s Goodwill matches people facing challenges to finding employment with life guide coaches who develop strategies to connect people to jobs and career services, financial education and access to benefits that boost their income and resources. The Goodwill also recently initiated the Y Work program for youth transitioning from high school to work. Each young person participates in a paid work experience in a Goodwill retail store before being placed in an integrated, competitive position in the community. The agency partners with the Kalamazoo Neighborhood Housing Services and AmeriCorps to extend boundaries of the financial wellness program in an effort to reach more clients and participants.
The Family Strengthening Center of Excellence Awards are sponsored by Goodwill Industries International. They honor Goodwill agencies that incorporate family financial stability strategies into their mission, vision and program offerings.
Goodwill agencies also honored with the 2014 Family Strengthening Center of Excellence Awards include:

All three agencies will be honored May 16, 2014, during Goodwill’s annual spring conference in Washington, D.C.