How our training programs go far beyond the classroom – a note from the President

Together, we prepare people for work.

Those are words you’ll see in our offices, on our website, on our letterhead and our business cards.

They’re carefully chosen words, meaningful and accurate. But explaining the work we do in six words seems a little misleading. It doesn’t quite convey how we do it, or the effort it takes. Granted, it would be hard to fit everything we do on a business card. Because behind those six words are teams of dedicated, knowledgeable people. They are willing to provide whatever support is needed to help our participants succeed before and after they find work.

Our employment training and education programs are an example of how completely we support our participants and how comprehensive our support system really is.

The support each of our participants receives in our training programs goes far beyond what they learn in their classrooms. It starts with a thorough understanding of what each individual hopes for and needs. From that understanding we are then able to create a personalized plan designed to help each person succeed.

Jason is a perfect example of our extensive support. As part of our ReEntry program, Jason went through our Automotive Service Training to give him the enhanced skills he needed to impress an employer and succeed at his job.

But In Jason’s case the phrase “Together, we prepare people for work” also meant much more than that. We also helped him find a place to live in two days when his housing suddenly fell through; helped him create a great resume; gave him interviewing tips and practice so he could impress an employer when he first met them; taught him the skills he needed to impress his employer after he started working, and helped him resolve his child support issues so he could be with his children again. Once he got the job, we also helped him to pay for the tools he needed to do his job well. As he says when he discusses what Goodwill-Easter Seals has done for him: “There’s not much that they didn’t have a hand in with my life. Financial, emotional – it was pretty outstanding.”

Many people, from several parts of our organization, played a part in helping Jason succeed. That is the case for a large number of the participants we work with. The support we are able to provide them is the direct result of the contributions we receive from our network of supporters, staff, donors and volunteers. They are the ones who represent the “we” when we say “Together, we prepare people for work.”

It’s because of the dedication we have to providing support for those who need it that we were invited to Washington D.C. to speak to Congress in July as they discussed welfare reform. As a provider of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) services since 1997, Goodwill-Easter Seals was in a unique position to explain how individuals and families are impacted by the programs and policies set in place by our government. Boyd Brown, our Area Director for Employment & Training, did an incredible job of representing us at the U.S. House of Representatives Ways and Means Subcommittee on Human Resources.

Thank you for supporting our efforts. Together, we will continue to prepare people for work.