Changes at Goodwill including the ‘Good Samaritan’ Voucher Program @ Goodwill

| October 10, 2016

Since 1963, Goodwill’s mission throughout northern Arizona has been to employ people with disabilities and other barriers to employment on our payroll, and to fund job training and placement to those not on our payroll through collaboration with funding sources and other community partners.

Goodwill uses the revenue generated from the sale of community residents’ no longer needed goods to create jobs on their payroll, and to fund job training and placement services to those not on their payroll.

During this time of continuing high unemployment and economic uncertainty many for profit and nonprofit businesses alike are having to examine how to operate within this business climate.  Goodwill Industries of Northern Arizona has not been immune to this volatility, with market conditions affecting our ability to continue some of the programs and services to people with disabilities and other barriers to employment not on Goodwill’s payroll.

Goodwill is working to provide a seamless transition of services to other community-based providers, including having job training and support services provided within its seven retail stores.  One great example of this type of partnership and collaboration is nonprofit Flagstaff based Quality Connections which serves individuals with disabilities, and who will provide job training and support at Goodwill which will ensure a seamless transition of services.

Goodwill is continuing with other services which includes Arizona@Work Coconino County which is the ‘one stop’ that connects those in need of job training and employment with employers in need of a qualified workforce, and the Fresh Start Re-Entry Program  whereby they have a Career Specialist co-located inside the Coconino County Detention Facility who will provide assessment, planning, case management, and foundational work readiness training…and a dedicated Career Specialist who will assist in placing these individuals into employment upon release.

Goodwill continue those programs and services that are fully funded, while discontinuing those that we can no longer afford.  Goodwill will also continue their focus on providing employment on their payroll for team members with disabilities and other barriers to employment.

Goodwill employs over 200 team members, 164 who are full-time with benefits.  45 team members or 22% of their workforce are people with disabilities while many others have other barriers to employment so as you can see, the impact is significant.

Goodwill will also be shifting the focus of what has previously been the ‘Good Samaritan’ Voucher Program which has for many years provided clothing and household goods to those in need.  This decision is related to being the location for Arizona@Work Coconino County and the focus on job training and employment to individuals with disabilities and other barriers to employment including those experiencing homelessness or near-homelessness.  However, that focus will be on assisting those served to obtain employment which includes, ’dress for business success’ clothing assistance for those actively participating through Arizona@Work Coconino County located at Goodwill.

Finally, Goodwill is a part of VOAD and as such handles the collection and distribution of donations of clothing and household goods in the event of a disaster and will, as well, continue to work with the American Red Cross to provide emergency assistance in the event an individual or family loses their home due to a disaster such as a fire.

Goodwill’s commitment to our Flagstaff and other northern Arizona communities is alive, well, and as strong as ever but with its primary focus being around our mission of, ‘putting people to work’.

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