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Community Connections

Sharing the good work of our nonprofit partners in North and South Florida

June 2018

Helping women thrive



Volunteers and clients from Dress for Success Palm Beaches celebrate together at a recent graduation from the New Directions Job Readiness Program.

Dress for Success Palm Beaches empowers unemployed and underemployed women to achieve economic independence through in-depth career assessments, mentoring, job searches, interview preparation and professional attire.

When one client, Jennifer, approached Dress for Success, she was depressed from years of futile attempts to gain employment with a living wage. After joining its job readiness program, she attended weekly meetings and received guidance from a supportive mentor who helped her realize her potential, redraft her resume and practice for interviews.

Now a sales agent with a well-known real estate firm, Jennifer said, “My experience with Dress for Success will live with me forever, in remembering just how special I am and how one can be who she truly was placed on this earth to be.....HERSELF!” 

Dress for Success Palm Beaches

New opportunities

        

Porsha is self-sufficient thanks to her personal determination and the guidance from OIC's case management team. A true success story -- Porsha just needed an open door!

For more than 15 years, OIC of South Florida (OIC) has served as a beacon of hope for unemployed individuals with barriers to self-sufficiency by partnering with local schools and government agencies to provide training, resources and job development.

Porsha is a 30-year old single mother who enrolled in OIC’s Pathways Program. Within several months, she completed an employability skills and digital literacy training course and a safety orientation program with a focus on janitorial services. She also received her Commercial Driver' License. With encouragement and coaching from her OIC employment specialist, Porsha found a position as a bus cleaner.

After six months on the job, she earned a promotion to coach service attendant with Broward County Transit -- a full-time position that allows her to support her family.

OIC of South Florida

Second chances



Pictured with A-STEP staff members Jill Black (left) and Leah Lynch (right), Tim said, "I feel so blessed to be a part of Goodwill’s A-STEP program. It’s about changing lives and giving hope for people who have no hope left. It’s about learning to overcome life's barriers in order to succeed. My life has turned the corner and I credit A-STEP for that."

At age 52, Tim was trying to turn his life around after serving time in prison for offenses related to an addiction. Though sober and on the right path for many years, his career options were severely limited. He was working at his brother’s heating and air conditioning (HVAC) company but earning a low wage as an assistant without an HVAC certification that has a pay potential of $32 an hour.

Through a referral, Tim found Goodwill Industries of North Florida's A-STEP program. The staff worked tirelessly with Tim for months to help him learn basic computer skills and overcome hurdles to obtain his GED records for enrollment in Florida State College at Jacksonville's HVAC program.

Never missing a day of school, Tim is now one of the top students and serves as a mentor for others in his class. He will graduate in 2019 as a certified HVAC technician.

Goodwill Industries of North Florida