Goodwill's Employment GPS Program (Goal, Planning and Support) provides wraparound services for jobseekers and stays alongside people for an extended period of time, through the often non-linear process of finding a job that leads to self-sufficiency. The Sisters of Charity Foundation of Canton provided the funding that enabled Goodwill Industries of Greater Cleveland & East Central Ohio to launch this program in 2015, as part of its strategic collaboration focused on employment.
The foundation also supported third-party evaluation of the program to help guide its implementation and review its outcomes. Foundation funding decreased over a six-year period, as Goodwill became increasingly able to support the program.
Before this program was established, most local employment programs defined success narrowly: a client was successful if they got a job and kept it for 90 days.
A Brand New Life
At the foundation’s recent board meeting, board members learned about Marlene Sullenberger, who recently received the Edgar J. Helms Outstanding Achiever Award from Goodwill.
Marlene is a mom who survived domestic violence and became homeless during the pandemic. And even once she became housed, rebuilding her life just felt daunting.
Fortunately, Marlene reached out for help. Christy Smith, an employment specialist from Goodwill’s Employment GPS program (formerly Dream to Achieve), gave Marlene the support and guidance she needed to set goals, make plans, and build a brand new life.
Christy’s help enabled Marlene to land a job she absolutely loves, and that has made all the difference. Goodwill explains Marlene’s journey in a short video available here.
The Sisters of Charity Foundation of Canton is a ministry of the Sisters of Charity Health System.
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