Most people know and frequent the various Goodwill retail stores around Houston. Many of us have found incredible items at quite the bargain while walking through their isles. If you’re anything like me, however, there are many things about Goodwill Industries of Houston that you knew nothing about.
Let’s start from the beginning. Created in 1945, the non-profit Goodwill Industries of Houston began with the specific goal of providing training and job opportunities for people with disabilities. The retail stores we know and love were created as a means to fund the employment projects they do. Goodwill of Houston has 65 stores and 46 attended donation centers. Other non-profits can even use Goodwill donation drives as a fundraiser for their own causes.
“As the community’s needs have changed over time, our programs and services have evolved and expanded to meet those needs,” said Terri Parris, PR and Media Relations Manager of Goodwill Industries of Houston. Goodwill also helps at-risk youth, veterans, ex-convicts, older workers, and other groups of people who need work and are having trouble finding a job.
“Over time, I believe that we have helped employers and future employees themselves understand that people with different abilities, and people who need a second chance make great employees,” said Parris. “We are very excited about the work that we are doing with veterans and their families. Transitioning from military service to civilian life can be challenging, so we are offering a complete package of services to make that easier for them. We are one of the leading providers of services to veterans in the area. Goodwill Houston placed almost 400 veterans in jobs last year. We also housed more than 500 veterans who were homeless, or at risk of homelessness.”
Goodwill finds a way to make the absolute most of every opportunity they have to help the community and the world. For example, Goodwill has a recycling program where they are able to recycle most of the materials that they are unable to sell in their stores, helping keep our waste levels headed to landfills low.
Although Goodwill does a lot of good in many aspects, their main focus is of course their career services.
“In the time that I have been at Goodwill Houston, I have come to understand that the real value of work cannot be measured by a paycheck alone,” said Parris. “Work is also about dignity, purpose, and for many of our clients—independence. It’s truly an honor to work in an organization that helps people change their lives through the power of work. “
If you are interested in supporting our Leader area Goodwill, please call 713-699-6305.