The mission of Goodwill of Southern Arizona has always been to provide a “hand up” to those looking to provide a better life for themselves and their families. We believe that jobs are transformational…and they can strengthen both the community and families through the POWER OF WORK.
Goodwill® of Southern Arizona is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization. Tax ID: 86-0223401
Originally named Goodwill® of Tucson; it was founded in 1967 in Tucson, Arizona, by a minister named Dale Dunbar. Goodwill ® gained its Non-Profit status/ became incorporated on September 19, 1969. The organization officially became Goodwill ® Industries of Southern Arizona on, September 27th, 1994. Goodwill ® moved to its Cherrybell facility in 1975.
In 1969, Goodwill ® opened its program doors to provide adults with severe disabilities a place to work as well as case management and daily support services. Participants in the Morse Business Center assisted the local business community with helping to create packaging for auto parts, packing computer parts and assembling medical items. As contracts dwindled, Goodwill® transitioned participants to work within our e-commerce departments by processing donated books in preparation for online sales as well as working in our retail stores.
In the early 2000s, we opened Job Connection Centers in our retail thrift stores to provide a place where job seekers could have access to the technologies and skills training that recruiters are using more and more. There are now seven Job Connection Center locations (4-Tucson, 1-Benson, 1-Sierra Vista, and 1-Casa Grande). This program is fully funded by Goodwill’s retail thrift store sales.
Also since the early 2000s, Goodwill® partnered with the Pima One-Stop to start providing adult case management and employer outreach services, to again, help job seekers find the employment to support their families. In 2011, Goodwill ® became a partner for Youth Employment, to help Pima County’s youth find after-school and summer employment to gain real-world work experience.
Goodwill ® expanded its youth services by creating GoodFutures, a three-phase, 9-month job training program where at-risk youth would not only learn how to find and keep employment, but also give back to the community through its service learning projects. These projects help them to explore other career opportunities they might not have considered in the past. Goodwill ® has been extending its reach to the youth population through the creation of the Youth Restoration Project and METRO Youth Program.
GOODWILL RETAIL THRIFT STORES
Goodwill of Southern Arizona’s first thrift store was a vacant Pep Boys location on 6th and 22nd. Due to program needs, Goodwill ® has been able to build more stores in the Southern Arizona region. While the economy has seen a downturn in the past decade, our organization has been able to contribute to the local economy by providing more employment opportunities in our retail stores. Each retail store can support 20-25 jobs. Between 2011-2014 alone, we opened eight new thrift stores.