#MissionMonday - Ray

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.


Ray served in the Army with an infantry unit. Once he left the military, he had a few good jobs but he wanted to go to college. Eventually, Ray got his Master’s degree in Marketing.

He first came to the Goodwill Veterans Services Program office looking for work. He was particular about the type of company he wanted to work for: Ray had a service-connected disability and he needed to be sure the job was a good fit. Even more concerning to Ray was the fact that he was a single dad and he wanted to make sure he would still have time with his daughters. 

 Jeremiah, Goodwill’s Veterans Career Development Facilitator, helped Ray find a great job working for a family business as a purchasing agent. Now Ray need to find an apartment big enough for his children and himself. Once he had accomplished that, Jeremiah helped him furnish his apartment by making a referral to a local community agency. Ray was excited about his new job and his new home 

Unfortunately, the job did not work out the way Ray thought it would. He liked the job but the hours were long and it felt as though his children were always in daycare. Ray returned to Jeremiah’s office several weeks later to talk about his next steps. He told Jeremiah that he did not think working was the right course of action for him at this particular time. His budget would be tight but he could live on his VA benefits. His children were small and Ray wanted to spend more time with them.  

Jeremiah encouraged Ray to consider part-time employment, knowing that having a recent job history would make it easier to find work in the future. Jeremiah suggested a position at a local grocery store. Ray agreed to think about it. A week later, he returned to report that he had gotten the job.

Ray was glad that he had assistance with his job search at a time in his life when he was not sure what to do. He is thankful that his case manager did not take a “one size fits all” approach with him. Instead, he received assistance in getting the type of job that met his individual and unique needs.

It’s what we do …