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January 27, 2010

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January 27, 2010

My name is Samantha Woolery and I work at Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries. I work in the Work Adjustment Training Program. Ohio Valley Goodwill is a great place to work. I have worked here for a little over three years. I like the different jobs I am able to work on. The staff help set up the different jobs so that I can complete them independently. They are always willing to help set up new jobs when they come into Work Adjustment. Some of the services that Goodwill offers include vocational exploration, job placement services, and personal care services. I have participated in the vocational exploration program and after completing this program I decided that the Work Adjustment Training program was a better fit for me. I also am provided with personal care assistance from the direct staff and am glad to be able to come to work and still get assistance I need throughout the day. Another great part of being at Goodwill is being a member of the Consumer Advisory Committee (CAC). This committee works as an advocacy group for Goodwill and the consumers attending here as well as participate in community outreach. I have been the Chairperson for almost 2 years and we have organized several community outreach events such as a fundraiser for the Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities Services to help with the 2009 Levy campaign, annual food drives for the Free Store Food Bank, and pop tab collection to give to the Ronald McDonald House. Goodwill also has a 504 committee that looks at safety and accessibility for all people at Goodwill. I attend these meetings as the representative from CAC. I think that Goodwill does a great job in helping so many people to get work and be productive in their lives.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

that I have worked at Goodwill for 3 years in the Work Adjustment Training program. I have also been the Chairperson for Goodwill’s Consumer Advisory Committee for 2 years.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

January 27, 2010

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January 27, 2010

My name is Kimberly Stone-Littner and I am the activities coordinator for the Adult Day Stay at the Twin Towers Life Enriching Communities. I develop therapeutic activities and a social environment for people with a range of medical conditions and disabilities such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer, to name a few. Since November of 2008, I have been organizing, with the help of the Goodwill CARE team members, a volunteer group of their program participants, to visit my facility on a once a month basis. The CARE volunteers come to participate in a scheduled craft activity and enjoy conversations with the elderly clientele. My participants look forward to the monthly Goodwill visits even so far as to prepare a chair for their favorite person to come sit by them during the activity. The room is always filled with excitement at the arrival of the Goodwill volunteers and conversations develop quickly. Because of some of the disabilities my clients have, it is sometimes quite difficult to encourage them to join in an activity or to be social. This is when the Goodwill group benefits my program the most; even the shyest of persons seem to open up when these two groups come together! I have often stood back on some moments to watch in enjoyment as a group of people with an array of ages and disabilities interact without judgments. Wouldn’t it wonderful if we were all that way? We thank the Goodwill CARE group for taking the time to visit us and share their warmth and unbridled joy with our group. We hope to keep this relationship continuing for years to come for the well being of the whole!

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

my professional role as an activities coordinator for Twin Towers as well as a mom to a participant in Goodwill’s CARE program.

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The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

wonderful! The Goodwill volunteers have been a joy to the residents I serve at Twin Towers and the staff of the Goodwill CARE program have been outstanding in the services they provide to the individuals they support.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

January 26, 2010

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January 26, 2010

I am a case manager for Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries. My job is to assist homeless Veterans to reintegrate into society. I am able to accomplish this task with the guidance and support of my supervisors, as well as the collaborative effort of the team of case managers and other staff at Ohio Valley Goodwill. Having once been a homeless Veteran myself helps me to better understand the specific needs of my clients. It was an Ohio Valley Goodwill Homeless Veterans’ Reintegration Project case manager who helped me to get back on my feet. Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries specializes in assessing people’s strengths and attributes, nurturing strong professional relationships and putting people to work.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

every aspect of my life.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

not change anything.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

working with a great bunch of people.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

top notch.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

build a satellite office in down town Cincinnati.

Ways to make it better...

I had found Goodwill a decade earlier.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

The stream of homeless Veterans that will be coming home after our latest conflict.

One thing I'd also say is that...

I haven't had the opportunity to work with people of this caliber since I was in the military.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 26, 2010

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January 26, 2010

I have worked with Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries Rehabilitation Center for the past 15 years servicing the needs of the homeless, particularly veterans. In that time I have come to know the professionalism, attention to detail and can do attitude of the Goodwill employees. The OVGI offers a broad range of services from job coaching to housing. OVGI has collaborated with other social service agencies, local, state and federal government agencies in a timely and efficient fashion, meeting the needs of developmental disabled, homeless families and veterans. OVGI is an asset to the community, and a cornerstone of the homeless Veteran assistance collective

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

referring clients for their programs.

Ways to make it better...

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would add slots and staff. Both could be accomplished by additional funding.

More feedback...

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

reaching agreed upon outcomes that benefits those people referred.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

kind, caring and concerned.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

offer even more service and reward their well deserving staff.

Ways to make it better...

in the organization had more slots/staff.

In my opinion, the biggest challenges facing this organization are...

the continued high level of service with an ever increasing demand.

One thing I'd also say is that...

given the opportunity to work for, work with and make referrals for this organization, I would do so without reservation.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

January 26, 2010

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January 26, 2010

As a professional who has spent 22 years educating high school students with multiple disabilities, Goodwill Industries has provided excellent supports and services to many of my graduating students. Goodwill Industries has provided consistent supports and services in such a manner that they have become an essential agency for persons with disabilities. This is evident in the success of my former students. Throughout my long-term relationship with Goodwill Industries they have readily provided tours of the facility for my students and parents, three week assessments and transitional visits for students. Furthermore, they have accepted them with a warm welcome into their Goodwill family. I have seen Ohio Valley Goodwill Industries expand their servitude over the years in terms of the support and services they provide for individuals with disabilities. This growth has included the development and implementation of the CARE program, in which several of my former students attend daily. My former students can attest to their personal happiness as they express their feelings without saying a word. Many of them being non-verbal, all you have to do is observe the smiles on their faces. In speaking with Dan, a former graduate of mine, I could hear the pride in his voice as he explained his job at Goodwill. Dan proudly admits that he loves his job, he is good at his job, and he has seldom missed any days of work since he has been employed there. Dan is 37 years old now and independently gets himself to work (including a transfer in downtown Cincinnati) on the public transportation system. I look forward to sustaining my positive relationship with Goodwill, so that we can continue to work together towards successful transitions for my students. The supports and services they provide for persons with disabilities are essential for the success of each individual.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in... the almost 20 years that I have worked with Ohio Valley Goodwill on transition planning for my students with developmental disabilities.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every month

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2009

January 26, 2010

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January 26, 2010

As a Service Facilitator for the Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities Services, I know that our agency prides itself on providing the highest quality services that optimizes choice and control for the individuals served. This type of service can only be achieved when the professionals providing services to individuals approach their job with humility, respect, and a sense of equality and justice. While I have witnessed many impressive achievements by staff, providers and individuals over the years, I have found none more impressive than those of Matt Byrum, a job coach for Ohio Valley Goodwill. Matt is the support staff for an individual that has been employed by Hamilton County for many years. Throughout the work day you can observe Matt fully engaged with the individual he serves. There is business being conducted amidst the laughter and talk of sports. The conversation is conversation of peers and equals. It is not only the content of the conversation that is impressive, but the tone is one of gentleness and engagement. When the individual served is traveling throughout the building, Matt accompanies him from a distance. The individual is always engaged with staff and Matt waits for cues to provide support. Because of Matt, the individual is able to be a productive employee at the Hamilton County Developmental Disability Services, where socialization is achieved, self esteem expanded and a paycheck is earned. I applaud Matt and Ohio Valley Goodwill for providing job coaching support in a truly exceptional manner.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

in...my day-to-day work life as I witness Goodwill’s Job Coach supporting the individual in his position as our agency. I have had the opportunity to observe the positive, affirming nature of this relationship for many years.

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How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

January 25, 2010

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January 25, 2010

As the Community Government Liaison for Hamilton County Developmental Disabilities Services, I have worked with Ohio Valley Goodwill for the past 5 years. As a contract service provider for Hamilton County DDS, Ohio Valley Goodwill has been a remarkable partner. The organization has been a leader in the community with the inclusion of advocates in all aspects of their many employment and training programs. Through our partnership, Ohio Valley Goodwill serves almost 500 individuals annually in work skill training programs as well as personal development opportunities, such as its award-winning CARE program (Center for Advocacy, Recreation and Education). In addition to the day to day operations of programs for individuals with disabilities, Ohio Valley Goodwill was an amazing partner in the People for MR/DD Services Levy Campaign. Being an active member of the Community Ambassadors Resource Alliance, a non-profit supported by Hamilton County DD Services, Goodwill set the standard for partner participation in the campaign. In summary, I have been very impressed with the quality of programs and services provided to individuals with DD served by Ohio Valley Goodwill and endorse our on-going collaborative partnership.

The Great!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

In my on-going work with Ohio Valley Goodwill through their involvement in the Community Ambassadors Resource Alliance and our many on-going collaborative community advocacy efforts.

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What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

Is Ohio Valley Goodwill's commitment to providing the highest quality services to the individuals with disabilities that they serve.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

Have been exceptional in their dedication to the organization's mission of providing skill training and employment to individuals with disabilities.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

Help more people to receive skill training, personal development services and employment in the community.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

About every week

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

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