National Volunteer Week Spotlight: Margaret Gomez
Margaret Gomez knows volunteering at Goodwill makes a tremendous impact. She knows because she was a Goodwill student herself at Goodwill’s King County Job Training and Education (JTE) Center.
More than two years ago, Margaret was taking Goodwill computer classes as a student. She was living in public housing, was looking for work and wanted to improve her computer literacy. Margaret’s instructor saw how well she supported classmates in their coursework and asked if she’d be interested in volunteering.
“I really like working with the people. It’s a really supportive environment. I wouldn’t still be volunteering if I didn’t really enjoy it.” -Margaret
More than 300 volunteer hours later, Margaret is enjoying her volunteer role as much as the day she started.
“I just enjoy it,” said Margaret, who volunteers twice a week in Goodwill’s computer class. “I know how I felt when somebody stepped up and helped me. … I really like working with the people. It’s a really supportive environment.”
Margaret loves the community feeling she gets as a Seattle Goodwill volunteer. Many of the students she works with she also sees during her job as a crossing guard for Seattle Public Schools.
“It’s kind of funny, because some of the computers students are parents and grandparents of the kids that I cross for,” Margaret said. “I see the students with their kids, and it’s kind of like a family. It’s really rewarding to see (Goodwill students) come in and watch them grow.”
Volunteering and helping students in Goodwill computer classes has sparked a desire to do more at Goodwill. Margaret soon plans to begin volunteering with King County JTE staff in case management, which plays an important role in implementing action plans to help students address and overcome barriers to economic opportunity.
“I see what other people battle with, and that is why I’d like to work in case management,” Margaret said.