Youth Programs

Seattle Goodwill expands Youth Aerospace Program to Renton

by Andrew Lang, Seattle Goodwill
July 18, 2017

Seattle Goodwill knows a job is the keystone piece to securing better economic opportunity, and with the expansion of our Youth Aerospace Program (YAP) to Renton, Goodwill created another conduit for students to achieve their goals of a career in the aerospace sector.

Our Renton YAP partners—Boeing, JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Renton Technical College—joined us for a ribbon-cutting ceremony Friday, July 14, as we officially welcomed the program’s expansion from Marysville to the south side of Seattle.

The YAP is a two-year program which provides  students a smooth transition through their senior year toward a career in aerospace. The program helps build strong soft skills and connects students with future career opportunities in the aerospace and advanced manufacturing industries.

“The program has already been very successful in Marysville with 61 enrollments since 2014,” said Barbara “b.g” Nabors-Glass, Vice President of Job Training and Education. “We hope to have 20 students enrolled in this new program at Renton.”

Some of those new Renton YAP students were present for the ceremony. After the ribbon cutting, Seattle Goodwill President & CEO Daryl Campbell spoke, followed by new Renton YAP Supervisor Monique Edwards, Program Assistant Brycen Smith and representatives from Boeing, JP Morgan Chase & Co. and Renton Tech.

“Partnerships such as this are crucial in providing access and supporting the success of our youth,” Renton Technical College President Kevin McCarthy said. “Education is complex, and RTC’s collaboration with Goodwill helps ensure that students will complete their education and move into rewarding careers.”

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Breaking Barriers: Our Annual Report is out!

by Kim Merrikin, Seattle Goodwill
February 8, 2017

Goodwill's 2015-16 Annual Report

What do you think when you hear the name “Goodwill?” Thrift stores? A place to drop off your used goods? Do you think changed lives, changed families, and changed communities?

Seattle Goodwill has a mission to provide job training and education opportunities to those experiencing significant barriers to economic opportunities—and when you shop at and donate to Goodwill, you’re helping us achieve that. Last year, you helped us serve over 9,700 people.

Every year, we share of the impact we’re having on our community, thanks to generous supporters like you, in our Annual Report. This year, our Annual Report theme was “Breaking Barriers” and it focused on some of the barriers our students face—like lack of education, homelessness, absence from the workforce, or language barriers.

As a Goodwill shopper and donor, your support helps our students overcome their barriers—and we’d love if you took a minute to read our latest Annual Report to see the impact you’re helping make right here in our community.

Use the links below to see how your support is changing lives.

Read our Annual Report | Download a PDF of our Annual Report
See the Impacts & Outcomes of our programs

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Goodwill Faces: Shak, Anja, J.C., & Asia

by Andrew Lang, Seattle Goodwill
November 29, 2016

Catch up on Goodwill Faces with the four stories below. Tune into our FacebookTwitter, and Instagram to follow our weekly #GoodwillFaces series! 

#GoodwillFaces - ShakShak moved from Hawaii to Seattle a year-and-a-half ago out of necessity, with no means of income. One of his three daughters needed a kidney transplant and had to be close to Seattle Children’s. Living out of a car for a year-and-a-half while his family stayed in Ronald McDonald Program housing, Shak discovered Goodwill’s free Job Training and Education Programs. He completed the Industrial Vehicles Training Program, among others, earned his Commercial Driver’s License, is now employed full time and is looking forward to moving into a place with his family soon, since his daughter recently received her new kidney.

“When I was in the van, I could see my kids at the park. There was a big park outside, and I would just come and see them at the park. But while I was in the van, I was like, ‘I need to do something.’ That’s when I went to the library, got a library card, and that is when I went online and I saw Goodwill and the programs they offered. It’s helped me to be self-sufficient, and it helps me to provide for my family, and it also keeps me busy. It’s hard to even just maintain a positive attitude, your daughter waiting for a kidney and living in a van. I’m not use to this weather, so I’m still getting accustomed to this rain. Being able to have (learned) a lot of the programs, man it helps a whole lot. Not only do you get job training, but you get more personal things that you can hang onto for a lifetime. The main thing, at least where I come from, the man should provide for the family. Not saying the lady can’t, but with the CDL, I can definitely provide more than If I wasn’t driving, and so it’s a blessing in every way.”


#GoodwillFaces - AnjaAnja found herself confined to her new home after leaving life behind in Germany in order to move with her husband and kids to Bremerton. She had no friends, no job and began experiencing depression. Anja sought help, she wanted to work and was directed to Seattle Goodwill where she took classes and earned her GED. Anja now works at Goodwill’s Silverdale location as Retail Supervisor following several job promotions.

“It was a little bit from everything, probably—no family here, not really friends. The first two years were hard. I got bored at home. I gained a ton of weight. Then I started this therapy group. I met a lot of people. I just kind of found my way through all this. The therapy, it helped. It helped going out, and it helped a lot being in this class. I liked being a material handler, too. It was like I was needed. The money you make, I mean it’s nice to have all these extra things. I could take my kids to places now and you don’t have to think about every dime we spend. It was nice to help support a family. I’m much more positive now. (Goodwill) helped me get out of my depression, helped me get a new start, feeling more confident in myself. Goodwill itself, working here, it’s fun. We have a great team. It’s fun to work for a company like that, that does such great things. There were people in my class that literally came from the street, and it feels good when they find a job. It feels good being a part of that and that is one of the main things that keeps me here. I like what we do and what we are doing it for.”


#GoodwillFaces - J.C. J.C.’s family has always had close connections to nonprofit and human service-type work. His mom recently retired as the CFO of Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, and his dad worked for the Urban League and other nonprofits. His aunt, Peggy Maxie, was the first black woman to be elected to the Washington State House of Representatives. J.C., though, spent 30 years working at for profit companies before discovering Seattle Goodwill. J.C. was between jobs and his family was encouraging him to look into nonprofit work when a friend alerted him to Goodwill’s Job Training and Education Programs. J.C. got hired on as an instructor and after teaching the retail and customer service course, he now serves as Goodwill’s Employer Liaison Manager, forging strong relationships with employers from Goodwill’s sector programs. He’s impacted countless lives through the work he’s done with Goodwill’s JTE students.

“Once you’re involved with (the students), it’s just like they love you to death, forever. Literally, I might not see a person for a year or something and I’ll see them and they’re like, ‘Oh, J.C.,’ and they know everything and are like, ‘How’s the wife and kids,’ It’s just so cool… I had a retail student who graduated from the program, just kind of middle of the road. She had a lot of anxiety and angst to speak publicly, but we kind of got her through it. She had never had a job before. The last week (of the program) we really focused on completing a lot of job applications and sending them out. She got three job offers. She was like, ‘I’ve never even had a job. Now I have three job offers,’ and so we asked her to come back, and I think we gave her an award at the graduation. But what I didn’t even know until the graduation was she said, ‘Part of my problem was people always telling me I couldn’t do it.’ And she said, ‘I have a learning disability,’ and I don’t know what it was because I never noticed it. She always just seemed a little shy, but she said for the first time in my life—she was probably 26—she said you guys really made me believe that I could do it. And she’s been working ever since. It’s that kind of stuff. It’s super cool.” -J.C.


#GoodwillFaces - AsiaAsia, a Seattle Goodwill Youth Aerospace Program student, spent her early youth in California before moving to the Philippines for high school. Asia moved back to the U.S. after high school and was directed to Goodwill’s YAP, where she’s underwent a major personal transformation while discovering a promising career path.

“I am kind of the home kid, because I don’t really explore a lot outside. I’m like the quiet kid who just sits up front and listens. Once I made friends thesecond day, that’s when everybody clicked. Once we made some friends, we became a whole family. I think the whole experience that I’ve had here has really changed all of us. At first we were all just kids that came from everywhere and didn’t know anyone. It changed me a lot. I was that kid who always locked up and ever wanted to show my true me. My mom sees it; I’m out going more. This program is just changing all of us from teenagers to becoming real adults.” - Asia

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Goodwill Faces: Donald, Brycen, Shawnteal & Farida

by Andrew Lang, Seattle Goodwill
November 17, 2016

Recently, we started an ongoing social media series called “Goodwill Faces” that highlights our students, staff, and volunteers involved with Seattle Goodwill. You can tune into our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to follow our weekly #GoodwillFaces series!

Here are our first four #GoodwillFaces: 

#GoodwillFaces - Donald

Donald first began pursuing his GED in 1976 when he was 25 years old. He didn’t finish, but in 2005 he renewed his mission, and 11 years later, with the help of Goodwill Job Training & Education instructors, he earned his High School 21 Plus diploma June 23, 2016, during Renton Technical College's graduation ceremony.

“Everything that I’ve sought to acquire in life—everything—if things didn’t work out, I’d quit. Job, if it didn’t work out, I was out of there. I’d quit. Married, marriage didn’t work out and things became complicated, I’d quit. I was just known in my own eyes as a quitter. I decided at this point that I wanted to get this GED. I don’t care how long it takes. So I started once again in 2005. Here it is 2016. Until the High School 21 program came along, I would have been doing this until I was 76 years old. I just got tired of viewing myself as a quitter, so I decided I wanted to stick with it.”
- Donald


#GoodwillFaces - Brycen

Brycen moved to Washington from California when he was a sophomore in high school largely to remove himself from a troubling home situation. He joined Seattle Goodwill’s Youth Aerospace Program as a senior at Snohomish High School and is enrolled at Everett Community College where he’s working toward a career in machine manufacturing.

“My dad was a drug addict, and my birth mom was a drug addict. As you can just imagine, there was a few complications with all of that. (Moving) wasn’t to get away from them, but rather it was to get a new start in life, because from day one it’s been like all-the-odds-against-us kind of thing. With it being an unhealthy atmosphere in California, people weren’t always the nicest, especially myself. I know how I was. Like I said, I’m a man of faith, and I really believe it was God that brought us up here, because of all the random places to pick. To come to Washington and have it working out and stuff and to find Goodwill, it’s like that’s got to be from someone who knows what he is doing... I wouldn’t be where I am now without Goodwill. I wouldn’t be in college. Just the financial steps you have to take just to get into college, I didn’t understand any of them. My mom, single parent, didn’t have any money. She wasn’t very familiar with the next step after high school either. It’s been a really interesting ride.”
- Brycen


#GoodwillFaces - ShawntealShawnteal came to Goodwill at 21 years old without a job, a high school diploma or a sense of direction in her life. She joined Seattle Goodwill’s Green Corps program, earned her High School 21 Plus diploma during an internship at Goodwill and now three years later she mentors Goodwill’s youth program participants working full time as a Youth Program Assistant. 

“When I was young I was a terrible kid. My first time going to juvenile was 10. By the time I was 13, I spent my 13th birthday in juvenile and did two-and-half years in Echo Glen. I got out not caring about myself, not caring whether I lived or died the next day or whatever. I was doing what I wanted to do, whatever I wanted to do. My dad was really abusive, so my mom would try to be more like a friend than a parent. She figured that we already went through enough with my dad, so she was like ‘I don’t really want to put you through too much.’ She was trying to be more like a friend. She wasn’t a bad parent. She just wasn’t strict, so I had a lot of freedom for whatever I wanted to do. So I ended up making bad decisions, hanging with the bad people. From the time I was 21 I was looking like I didn’t have anything. I didn’t have a job. I didn’t have a diploma. I didn’t have anything and then I came here. … Somebody saved me. Somebody came and said, “Listen Shawne, you need to snap out of whatever it is your going through and get this together because you have these opportunities. You’re smart. You’re a leader.’ Somebody came to me and saved me and helped me out, so I feel like I’m obligated to help others and to pay it forward.” - Shawnteal


#GoodwillFaces - Farida

A year ago Farida immigrated to the United States from Bangladesh in order to live with her husband of five years. Farida immediately went to Goodwill, completed Job Training and Education classes and now works as a cashier at Seattle Goodwill’s Dearborn location.

“I came to the U.S. one year ago. When I came here, the next day I went to Goodwill and I took ESOL Class Level 2. I completed the course successfully. I applied for many jobs, and I got four offers at the same time. But all the time I liked Goodwill, so I chose Goodwill. I worked in a school (in Bangladesh). After five years of teaching, I got a principal position. This is my goal. I love teaching. In my country I completed a Master’s degree, and I hope when I get the chance, I can start education (here).” - Farida



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Key Bank donation helps YAP students chart path to life success

by Andrew Lang, Seattle Goodwill
September 4, 2016

Brycen was sitting in his high school manufacturing class two years ago when a presenter entered the room and began speaking about some extracurricular program. Brycen wasn’t paying too much attention. He thought he’d heard it all before.

Suddenly, the man’s message piqued his interest. This was different.

“I raised my head and started listening to this guy and all the opportunity he talked about,” Brycen explained. “It wasn’t a college thing. It wasn’t a schooling thing. I thought, ‘This is a program meant to help people.’ I had this feeling that it would carry me into the next step in life.”

That was the first step in what’s been a transformative experience for Brycen. That day he learned about Seattle Goodwill’s Youth Aerospace Program (YAP), which focuses on aviation/manufacturing training that guides youth through their final year of high school, first year of community college and subsequent job placement in the field.

The program also helps youth develop knowledge, skills and motivation to achieve in school. They also learn to contribute positively to the greater community, be competitive in the job market and successfully enroll in and complete post-secondary education.

Brycen is a YAP 3 student. He’s enrolled in Everett Community College and well on the pathway to building a bright future for himself and his family. That’s especially important given some of the hardships Brycen’s been dealt.

He moved from California to Washington where he attended Snohomish High School as a sophomore. He left home, moving to a completely unfamiliar place, to get a new lease on life.

“My dad was a drug addict, and my birth mom was a drug addict,” Brycen said. “You can imagine there was a few complications with all of that. (Moving) wasn’t to get away from them, but rather it was to get a new start in life, because from day one it’s been like all-the-odds-against-us kind of thing.”

Goodwill’s YAP has been a blessing, Brycen said. He’s forged lasting friendships while charting a path to a career that will help him one day support a family of his own—one of his largest life goals.

“With the knowledge Goodwill has gifted me with, their support and my faith and everything, it’s like I’m unstoppable at this point,” Brycen said. “So it’s really just this amazing feeling. It’s like for the first time in my life things are actually working and that is just inspiring. The ultimate goal is to have a wife and family and really provide for them. When I was young that was stolen from me. The best way to fulfill that in my life is to recreate that myself, so I’m going to do it.”

Brycen’s YAP 3 classmate, Asia, has also grown thanks to her time in the YAP program.

Asia went to elementary school in the United States before moving to the Philippines and finishing her schooling there. She graduated at 15 years old and moved back to the U.S.

Asia—always shy and reserved growing up—has blossomed into a far more outgoing person thanks to the YAP program, and she’s also discovered the type of career she hopes to have.

“It changed me a lot,” said Asia of her first year in the program. “I was that kid who always locked up and never wanted to show my true me. I’ve changed a lot. My mom sees it. I’m outgoing more. I’m getting the soft skills I need. This program is just changing all of us from teenagers to real adults.”

Key Bank, which is prioritizing workforce development and education, has awarded Seattle Goodwill and Everett Community College a $75,000 grant to support the Seattle Goodwill Youth Aerospace Program and ECC enrollment.

“We know students who leave with a two-year degree earn, on average, twice as much as adults without a high school diploma,” said Barbara “b.g.” Nabors-Glass, Vice President of Seattle Goodwill’s Job Training and Education. “We are very grateful for the support of Key Bank for helping impact our student’s futures in such a positive way.”

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