Success Stories


Meet Natasha

   Natasha is new to the Marion area. As a youth involved in our Summer Youth program, she has grown in confidence. She has worked with her job coach to overcome obstacles inside and outside the workplace. The program offers the opportunity for youth, ages 16-24, to develop a work history and have a current reference from an employer. Goodwill is responsible for placing the youth at the job sites, as well as providing training, job coaching and mentoring. Natasha was placed at Clean Sweep in Marion and has performed very well. Because of her job she is now living on her own, and has the drive to become successful in every area of her life.


Meet Nick

   Nick started his journey with Goodwill as a consumer through our Workforce Development Department. Our Workforce Development Department helps individuals with disabilities or other barriers to employment explore possible careers, prepare for the job market, and find appropriate employment opportunities. Nick worked one on one with our job developer who was very impressed with the effort that he put into everything he did. While doing his job assessment one thing became very apparent – Nick loves people. What a better place to take advantage of this skill than the Goodwill Retail stores. In November of 2013 Nick became a part time employee at our Marion store. He is always willing to help wherever he is needed and is eager to learn. Since being hired Nick has successfully preformed almost all duties in the store. His smile and energy are contagious. He is a wonderful addition to the Marion team.


Meet Deven

   Deven is a participant of our summer youth program in Crawford County. He works in the Parks Department for the city of Bucyrus. The goal of the program is to provide youth valuable work experience while earning a paycheck to meet basic needs. When Deven first started working he lacked self-confidence and was very quiet. Within a short amount of time he was smiling, starting conversations and his attitude was excellent. He became a steady, consistent hard worker who followed directions well. The City of Bucyrus has benefitted greatly from the program and Deven is definitely a part of the program’s success.


Meet Tonia

   Tonia moved to our area from Alabama in hopes of turning her life around. She learned about our job readiness classes while staying at Turning Point. Our Education & Training Center, located in Marion, offers free classes where participants learn essential skills for today’s workplace, as well as how to search for a position, create a resume, complete an application and prepare for an interview. Tonia was given the tools she needed and excelled in the program. She gained full time employment at a chain restaurant and was able to pay off some fines and move into transitional housing. She has reinvented herself and is currently working with our Workforce Development Department for some additional skills that will further her opportunities in our community.


Meet Terri

   Terri, a Veteran who works at the Marion VA Office has lived in her State Street three-bedroom, two bathroom townhouse unit since it was built with a HUD-funded grant in 2013. She shares the townhouse with her two young children. Terri was the recipient of some of the Veteran’s Grant funding in 2013 awarded to Goodwill from the Marion County Commissioners Office. The funding was used to pay her past-due bill so that she could keep her daughter in a safe environment, allowing her to retain her employment. Through our housing program and collaborative efforts with various community agencies, Goodwill is able to help individuals such as Terri gain self-sufficiency.


Meet Nicole

   Nicole was unemployed prior to successfully completing the PIES (Preparing Individuals for Employment Success) Program. This free class assisted her with her job search and employability skills, including gaining the confidence she needed with interviewing, which helped her land full time employment. She now feels she has the assurance to succeed.


Meet Terry

   In the 7 1/2 years that Terry has worked in the Goodwill Retail Store he has seen a lot of donations come through the door (including T-shirts). His passion and knowledge for music and books has enabled him to excel in the store’s media section. Terry takes great pride in his job and in being an employee of Marion Goodwill.


Meet David

   Through our Housing Program, David is able to lease one of our accessible apartments. The units are designed for persons with physical disabilities by providing lowered sinks and countertops, accessible appliances, easy roll-in-showers, and accessible parking.


Meet Austin

   Austin is a 16 year old high school student. He participated in our Summer Youth Program for the first time. The program allowed Austin to develop skills, gain work experience and earn money. Proving … It’s never too early to learn about the power of work!


Meet John

   John has made a habit out of proving his doubters wrong. Born with cerebral palsy, he has always strived to prove that he can overcome his barriers and live a "normal" life. As an accomplished multiple sport athlete and coach for the Special Olympics, a devoted member of his family and a dedicated employee, John is no "normal" person, he's an exceptional one. John has worked a lot of different kinds of jobs, and after several years of frustration in the job market, John was referred by a support administrator at DCBDD to Goodwill in December of 2008. John credits Goodwill with providing him with full-time employment, benefits he wouldn't have otherwise and a job satisfaction that he has never experienced anywhere else. "I'm amazed at what all Goodwill does," John states, "I'm very grateful for the opportunity to work here."

   John continues to prove to the world and himself that he can overcome any barrier set in front of him, and Goodwill has provided him with the training, work skills and support from his co-workers and friends to do just that. In closing, John says, "Goodwill has given me the opportunity to be independent and work with a team. This job has helped me learn to work with lots of different people."


Meet Rosa

   When speaking to Marion Goodwill employee, Rosa, you would not sense the tremendous pain and suffering she's been through. She has a very positive outlook on life despite enduring a car accident which left her unable to walk for nearly two years. After the accident, Rosa was unemployed for five years. She stayed at home taking care of her four children while her husband worked. A divorce from her husband left Rosa with no source of income. She turned to Turning Point to get her life back in order.

   Turning Point connected Rosa to Marion County Job & Family Services. She began working at Goodwill in 2007 in the Work Services Program. Participants in this program are given a chance to gain work experience in a real work environment which enables them to develop a work history.

   While going through the program Rosa continued to diligently apply for jobs and was eager to work and provide more for her family. She struggled to find someone who would hire her because of her gap in employment in addition to the slight restrictions she had due to the injuries from the car accident. Fortunately, after a year of working through Job & Family Services, Goodwill was in need of a part time employee. Rosa's work ethic and dependability had not gone unnoticed. She got hired at Goodwill in 2008 and was promoted to a full time employee within a short period of time. Rosa has been happily employed at Goodwill ever since.


Meet Stephanie

   Stephanie struggles, like so many others, with low self-esteem. She didn't think she could handle having a job or even be good at something. After being referred to our Workforce Development office by the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation (BVR) of Delaware County, Stephanie began working with her job developer. They did an assessment at our Delaware retail store and the staff encouraged Stephanie to fill out an application. This support was all Stephanie needed. She was interviewed and hired!

   She started by sorting wares that were then priced and put out on the sales floor. As Stephanie's confidence grew so did her ability to learn new things. One of Stephanie's passions is reading. With this passion came the challenge of working with books in the store. She excelled in this department. Even though she loved the challenge and she did extremely well it wasn't enough for Stephanie. Her goal was to become a cashier. As you can imagine she has succeeded at this as well.

   Stephanie is a single parent of a special needs child and she wants to make her and her son's life better. She has worked hard at every task that she has been challenged with, and she has succeeded. The Delaware South store is proud to say that she has been an employee at their location for three years now.


Meet Darlene

   Darlene came to Goodwill through the Bureau of Vocational Rehabilitation (BVR) in Union County. She wanted to make a career change but was afraid her hearing impairment would limit her options. Our Workforce Development Job Developer, Emily, started meeting with Darlene on a weekly basis. During one of the meetings Emily found out that Darlene had a passion for making floral arrangements. Darlene brought in pictures of some of her arrangements and Emily knew that this is what Darlene needed to do. They worked on putting a portfolio together, and with Emily's help, Darlene started applying at different floral shops in the area. After a short while, Darlene was interviewed and hired by Dublin Floral Design located on North High Street in Dublin, Ohio.

   Darlene is extremely happy with her new position and her experience with our Workforce Development office. "I feel very fortunate to have Emily as my job developer. She is very dedicated to her work and her clients."


Help tell the Goodwill story

   Has Goodwill Industries touched your life in some way? We're looking for people who have gone through our job training programs, as well as former Goodwill staff and volunteers, to share their experiences. Contact to tell us how Goodwill has touched your life.