Veterans across the country will be honored on Tuesday for Veterans Day, but some local organizations don’t just honor those who fight for our country on Veterans Day. Instead they honor them every day.
Earlier this year, Goodwill started the program Operation: GoodJobs. It connects veterans and military families with work and support. In less than a year, the program has served 356 local veterans and military family members, and placed more than 94 into jobs in Ventura and Santa Barbara counties.
The program was formed after Goodwill of Ventura and Santa Barbara Counties received a $300,000 grant from Walmart.
“We were only one of 12 Goodwills nationwide that got the grant. What it does is provides for employment services training and employment preparation for veterans and their families,” said Laura Kistner of Goodwill Industries.
In addition, Goodwill launched an in-store donation program, Change for Change, which funds subsidized employment, certification and other services for GoodJobs participants.
One of the veterans the program has helped is Army veteran Robert Ford of Oxnard.
“I lost my job. I lost my place to live. I didn’t have anywhere to go and if it wasn’t for these folks here. I don’t know where I would be,” said Ford.
The program helped Ford update his resume, practice interview skills, get a guard card certification and ultimately land a security guard position at Embassy Suites in Oxnard.
“It is amazing. I don’t think a lot of folks out there know that this is available to them. I had no idea, what my benefits were until I found the goodwill folks,” said Ford.
If you are a veteran interested in the GoodJobs program, there are information sessions every Wednesday at 10 a.m. at Goodwill at 130 Lombard St. in Oxnard.
For more information on the Goodwill GoodJobs program, you can call 805- 981-0130