The First Full Week Of May Is Goodwill Industries International Week

Goodwill Columbus staff and participants will reflect on the organization’s 75 years of service to the central Ohio community during Goodwill Industries International Week, which spans from Monday, May 5 to Friday, May 9.  Every year during the first full week of May, Goodwill agencies across the United States and Canada celebrate the power of work.

“Goodwill Columbus is part of a larger network of Goodwill organizations that collectively serve more than six million people with disabilities and other barriers through employment and training programs internationally,” said Goodwill Columbus President and CEO Margie Pizzuti.

To mark the special week, Goodwill will hold job fair featuring several employers hiring a variety of positions on Thursday, May 8 from 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.  Multiple employers, including Nationwide Insurance and The Forum at Knightsbridge are expected to attend. “We felt it is fitting to celebrate this week with an invigorated push to help individuals in need find employment, as we’ve done for seven and a half decades,” Pizzuti said. 

Jobseekers will also have the opportunity to participate in an online job fair hosted by Goodwill Industries International from May 5-7.  During the fair, jobseekers will be able to visit employers’ virtual booths to review open positions, watch videos and read more about them. Recruiters from the employers will be online, and jobseekers can chat live with them. For more information and to register visit: goodprospects.goodwill.org/career-fairs/

The Goodwill movement began in 1902 with Rev. Edgar Helms in Boston. The minister envisioned an agency that would of employ needy individuals to repair and sell donated items as a way of providing “a hand up, not a handout.” The idea worked and other cities started their own Goodwill organizations. Goodwill Columbus got its start in an abandoned church on Mt. Vernon Avenue in November 1939. Rev. Charles Graham started the organization “on a shoestring, but with a wealth of enthusiasm,” The Columbus Dispatch reported in May 1940.  Indeed, in the early days of the operation the budget was a meager $8,400 and its five to 10 workers were paid in merchandise.

Seventy five years later, Goodwill Columbus employs more than 1,200 people with an operating budget of $41 million, but remains dedicated to its mission of helping individuals with barriers to employment find a better life through the power of work. Goodwill Columbus is the sixth largest nonprofit in central Ohio and is among the top 50 largest employers central Ohio.  Goodwill Columbus provides nearly 1.2 million hours of service to more than 4,100 participants with disabilities and other barriers through day habilitation programs, community-based supported living services, employment training and job placement services. For more information on Goodwill Columbus, please visit our website at www.goodwillcolumbus.org