My name is Denise, and I want everyone to know that I love Goodwill! I graduated from Greenfield High School in 2004, and I liked how busy I was. I took classes, had friends and even had a small job as part of my special education program. But after graduation, there were no more activities for me.
My mom had to put me on the waiting list for adult programs and funding. I stayed home for about a year without things to do. I got bored and was lonely sometimes.
That summer my mom heard about the new Goodwill Opportunity Worker program, which puts people with disabilities to work without the funding that is normally needed for placement. She sent in an application, and I was accepted into the program in the fall of 2005.
My job at Goodwill is so much fun. When people ask me why I love Goodwill, I say the people I work with. We eat lunch together and take breaks and tell jokes. The staff at Goodwill helps me to reach my goals by encouraging me and showing me how to do new or difficult tasks. They say that this opportunity is so important for me in many ways, and I agree. I am able to earn my own money, which I spend on things like books, hair appointments and CD’s.
The staff is proud of me, and my case managers say that I am contributing with the work that I do. I just think it’s fun, and I love being here!
Being at Goodwill makes me feel good about myself because I feel needed. I am connected. I am happy.
Denise was also featured in a Goodwill commercial in 2011: