Minden Press-Herald

Oct 01st

Goodwill asking for aid

It's a time for giving and receiving. So why not give and help people receive a priceless gift?

Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana is accepting tax deductible donations from the public for their stores, which are used to turn around and help their own communities.

"People think they give stuff and we sell it for profit. Every dollar we make is reinvested into the community and putting people to work," said D.J. Roman, marketing and communications manager for Goodwill Industries of North Louisiana.

Moreover, Goodwill also uses their programs for job placement both long term and by utilizing seasonal holiday jobs available this time of the year.

"Traditionally, we look for long term opportnities. But we do look for all kinds of opportunities and work with tons of clients, if the right opportunity and the right person prevents itself, we'll (place in a seasonal job) as well," said Roman.

Roman acknowledges that most people's pereception of Goodwilll begins and ends with their stores and donations, but Goodwill goes much deeper than that.

"What they don't know about are our programs," said Roman. "Our stores are what generate revenue to fund these programs.

Some of those programs include:

Supportive Employment Program — One of Goodwill's primary focuses, this program helps people with disabilities — physical, educational, etc. — as a barrier to employment find employment.

E Squared — Funded by Capital One Bank, the program provides at-risk youth ages 17-22 with free GED instruction and job placement during program participation.

Adult Reentry Mentoring Initiative — Programs helps people that have incarcerated make transition back to normal life by offering access to mentoring concerning their future, jobs, and educaiton to avoid vulnerability to ending up back into the prison system.

He says next year, the organization's goal is to make the connection between their mission of improving people's lives through the power of work and how that's done with their programs.

"When you donate or shop at Goodwill, you're helping people with barriers to employment have access to a service so they can get an opportunity for employment," said Roman. "That creates a sense of self worth and a feeling of them being able to accomplish things and provide for their families."

Roman described donations as crucial to Goodwill's mission, calling them "Fuel for the engine."

"The more quality donations and more revenue we can generate and the more people we can help."

The holiday season — when people are in most giving spirit — is a peak time of the year for donations.

"This is a great time of the year for people to make donations. If they're looking for year-end donations for deductitons on taxes, we want Goodwill to be top of mind for them. They're going to donate somewhere and we are a great way to donate because it goes into helping their community," said Roman.

To make a donation, visit one of the Goodwill Stores in the are: 1005 Homer Road, Minden; 4000 Airline Dr., Bossier City; 1085 Hwy. 80, Haughton; 2218 East Texas St., Bossier City; 800 West 70th St., Shreveport; 8100 Jump Run, Shreveport; 1243 Shreveport-Barksdale Hwy., Shreveport; Goodwil Clearance Center, 6020 Linwood Ave., Shreveport.

For more information, visit www.goodwillnla.org.






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