Lucy is from a large Italian family. Although she has many siblings, when her parents first became ill over 13 years ago, she was the only one who offered to quit her job and move to Florida to help them out.
Lucy found a full- time job and moved in with her parents so she could help them with things like bathing, cooking, and getting to doctor’s appointments. She worked at that same job for 10 years before new management took over and let her go. After that, Lucy had several jobs that did not work out for various reasons. She was convinced it was her fault and that she was no longer capable of working in an office environment.
Lucy had been collecting unemployment for several months and was beginning to worry because her benefits were about to run out. She had spent nearly three months applying to positions she found online. She had gone to only one interview, which she had bombed horribly.
While participating in one of the required workshops for unemployment, Lucy met Antonia, one of Goodwill’s Job Connection’s Career Development Facilitators. Antonia introduced herself to Lucy’s class and offered to help the participants find employment. She said that she liked to help people with their resumes and Indeed.com accounts. She told the class that she could help with things like mock interviews and job search as well.
Lucy did not hesitate to schedule an appointment with Antonia that afternoon. Her unemployment checks were not covering all of her bills and she knew the checks would soon stop coming altogether, so finding a job was her primary concern.
Antonia asked Lucy questions about her living situation, health, financial and educational needs, and explained that she could refer her to other community partners who could help with other needs. When Antonia asked Lucy about her previous employment Lucy became emotional. She explained to Antonia that she doubted she would be successful in another office job. Antonia reviewed Lucy’s employment history and pointed out that she had a solid work history, prior to the past three years. Antonia asked Lucy about her office skills and talked to Lucy about previous job duties. Antonia took the time to learn about the last few jobs Lucy had and talked to Lucy about how sometimes “being the right fit” for a job may have more to do with the other people than herself.
Antonia focused on Lucy’s resume and showed her how to use keywords to make her resume match what employers are looking for. She coached Lucy on how to answer questions about her work history during interviews and praised her for her ability to solve complex problems with mortgage titles and property owners. Antonia continued to contact Lucy after her initial appointment to give her job leads and make small adjustments to Lucy’s resume, depending on the job for which Lucy was applying. Most importantly, Antonia encouraged Lucy to keep trying in her quest for an office job, and she helped Lucy to understand there was nothing wrong with her, as a past supervisor had implied.
Less than two weeks later, Lucy called Antonia to say that she had been hired by another nonprofit as a full-time administrative assistant. Lucy was proud to learn that she would be making $18 an hour and was delighted to be working with mothers and their children in a transitional housing program.
Lucy stopped in the office several days later. She wanted to give Antonia a hug and to say “thank you” in person. Antonia assured Lucy that she did all the hard work herself and that she was a “good catch” for any employer. Changing lives through the power of work. It’s what we do!