#MissionMonday - Daniel

Every Monday, we'll be posting a new story of how our mission has assisted people in the community. Be sure to check back each week for a new and inspirational story of someone who was helped by Goodwill Manasota. Changing lives through the power of work...it's what we do.



Daniel was a civil engineer working at a power plant. He had a wonderful job but he made some bad decisions that ended up changing his life. Daniel went to jail for almost a year for using and dealing drugs. Upon his release, he went home to find that his apartment, two cars, and all his belongings were gone. His incarceration had led him to become estranged from his family and now he had nowhere to go. He went to a Salvation Army shelter and began trying to figure out a way to put his life back together. 


He began looking for a job but he could not find anyone who would hire him right out of jail, while still living in a shelter. The most he thought he could hope for would be to get some menial job that he would hate. His guess was that, although he was a free man now, he was still going to feel like he was in prison. 


At the shelter, he kept hearing about the Goodwill Job Connection. Daniel took the bus to Goodwill’s Job Connection office at the Corporate Campus in Bradenton, where he met Morgan. Morgan and Daniel started working on an employment plan. Daniel had heard that Goodwill was a second chance employer. He told Morgan he was hoping to find a job at the Goodwill near the shelter so he could work full-time and be able to report to work on time.


Morgan called Sara in Human Resources – she came to the Job Connection office and met with Daniel immediately. Sara liked Daniel’s answers to her questions – she could tell he was ready to move on from his past. She set up an interview with a manager at one of the Goodwill stores. The manager who interviewed Daniel offered him a job on the spot. Daniel was amazed that he was able to get a job and go to work just one week after his initial visit to the Job Connection office.


Things are better for Daniel these days. Because he had a job, he was eligible to secure transitional housing as part of a recovery program. Now Daniel can afford to pay rent and he has his own room. When Daniel graduates from the recovery program next month, the court will withhold adjudication for the felony possession charges. Without a felony record, Daniel knows it will be easier to find a job the next time he decides to go look for one. In February, he will receive his two-year medallion from Narcotics Anonymous. Even better, Daniel has reconnected with his daughter. He is ecstatic that he will get to meet his newborn granddaughter as soon as she arrives.


Daniel says that God brought him to Goodwill for a reason. He says he wants to make a career for himself at Goodwill so he can support its mission of changing lives through the power of work. He knows firsthand that Goodwill will provide him with the tools he needs in order to be successful – but it will be up to him to use those tools. Daniel says he is fortunate that Goodwill has given him a second chance so that, once again, he can make a positive contribution. It’s what we do …