Thank you Goodwill Industries, for attempting to fix so many problems here in Waukesha, Wisconsin. So many countries have absolutely nothing in the way of a service economy.
My first foray into a third world happened in 2001 or 2002 when I first visited the island of Jamaica. I was going there to spend a magical week in some swell all-inclusive resort in Negril across from the Grand Lido resort. Apparently, these all-inclusive, semi-private, clothing optional, drunken idiot laden and STD-friendly resorts were very popular prior to the Indonesian Tsunami of 2004. While on the shuttle that was whisking us to this hedonistic resort, I got to watch a naked, native child play with his only toy which was a rubber tire outside his mud hut in his village. That memory is pretty much ingrained upon me forever. This was probably the last stoner vacation many of us would enjoy for a while. It just couldn’t last, you see.
The magical era of the 1990’s was so freeing compared to today. We could screw our brains out stoned and drunk and just not care about the world. There were plenty of jobs and everyone had disposable income and most of my friends owned their own homes and businesses by the time they were twenty-three. It all seems too good to be true, and it now seems like a distant dream.
Thanks to the Internet and Globalization we now know everything about every minor detail of every country in the world. We now know about how our behavior affects every major machine in the galaxy, what our disastrous and lasting impact will be on the weather, economy, human rights, ecosystems, rain forest, and potential gender issues in Portland, Oregon.
For example; if you buy an American Cheeseburger at an American fast food establishment, you are causing another country to go bankrupt, and at the same time you are wasting 20 gallons of water per pound of beef, plus encouraging deforestation of the rainforest. You also need to pay a fat tax, a pre diabetes tax, and an entitlement to be an American tax. Then you should immediately go do the insanity workout and hand over that cheeseburger to the nearest food bank.
Where was I? oh Goodwill Industries…
Goodwill Industries could easily save the world, if it were run a little more efficiently. In Waukesha at 1400 Nike Drive Waukesha, WI 53186 phone number (262)547-5023, website address is www.amazinggoodwill.com this Goodwill facility has it totally going on it offers pretty much everything. This is a place where you can buy clothing, household items, furniture, books, electronics, CD’s, DVD’s I mean everything. You can also buy gift cards like they have at Macy’s.
The money that is generated by all the clothing donations etc. is turned into a mega economy. They use this facility to house an adult day care center for 45 persons who are developmentally disabled. This facility also houses an internet café and free job seeker haven. The money pays to train and recruit new workers for all the Goodwill stores. This money pays all the employees that work in this facility which even has its own 50 person conference center, kitchen, 2 lounges and all those free job-seeking computers that I didn’t really get to see with my own two eyes but they were there, I know they were there.
The list of services that are offered either on site or at another location is mind boggling; food service training, Environmental service training, Business career training, work services, laundry and linen services, benefits counseling and vocational evaluation and assessment are a partial list of all the services that are free.
According to its Media Relations Manager, Lauren Lawson Zilai, “To pay for its programs, Goodwill sells donated clothes and other household items in more than 2,500 retail stores and online at shopgoodwill.com. Goodwill uses the revenue earned from these sales to fund job training, employment placement services and other community programs. Goodwill Industries collectively reported $4 billion revenues in 2010. Eighty-four percent of those revenues went directly toward supporting and growing critical community-based programs and services. Last year alone, more than 74 million people in the United States and Canada donated to Goodwill”.
In 1902, pioneer in social innovation, Rev. Edgar J. Helms from Boston developed the concept to resale items donated from the wealthy and use the money to develop social programs for the less fortunate. The program pays for itself and this idea developed into a $4 Billion social enterprise.
The members of the Milwaukee Junior League use this idea to fund its programs with an annual garage sale that is based on donated items. I imagine many other non-profits use this model to fund their own community programs, but $4 Billion dollars? That is phenomenally successful.
Please consult their website if you need any of these services at www.amazinggoodwill.com