As the world has shifted to a virtual atmosphere these past few months, many organizations have transformed their funding and programs to continue serving Indianapolis residents in new and unique ways.
Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana is no exception. Goodwill is one of EmployIndy’s YES Indy providers, serving Marion County opportunity youth looking to overcome barriers to success. Over the past few months, the Goodwill IGNITE grant, the Google Digital Career Accelerator (GDCA) grant, and Senior Community Service Employment Program have supported three Nurse Family Partnership participants and one Excel Center graduate as they worked to achieve their education goals.
These four deserving students, Arzoo “Zoey” Bakhtiary, Adriana Marin, Jessica Spencer, and LeighAnn McGregor, had their tuition covered by the GDCA grant so they could enroll in the Vincennes University Certified Clinical Medical Assisting training program, hosted at Wayne Township Adult Education Center.
As COVID-19 hit Indiana in mid-March, the CCMA program was forced to go completely virtual. This transition is difficult for any students but feels near-impossible for those who are without a laptop and resources to purchase their own – and Jessica and Adriana fell into this category.
When the Goodwill family learned of this barrier, they immediately began brainstorming ways to remove obstacles hindering these two young women from pursuing their education with the hopes of moving into middle-skill work. The answer was loaning out two laptops from Goodwill’s Senior Community Service Employment Program so they could continue their studies.
Goodwill continued to provide these two young ladies with resources and other supports beyond providing laptops, such as bill payment assistance, food, and professional attire through the IGNITE grant.
Despite in-person training coming to a halt, dealing with barriers to success, and needing to transfer everything online, Zoey, Adriana, Jessica, and LeighAnn each have successfully completed the CCMA course and passed the National Healthcare Association exam on June 11, 2020.
Goodwill is one of many organizations who altered their funds and programs as they utilized their resources to fill resident’s newly established barriers to education and employment. Congratulations to the students in their achievement and thank you to Goodwill staff and ecosystem partners that played a part in helping these students achieve their goals!
Thank you to the Goodwill team for sharing your story so that we may also celebrate in your successes.