Achieving The “American Dream”- WOWT.com

A refugee family takes a big step toward the American Dream…home ownership.

Kul and Yebu Sasankhar came to Omaha from Nepal two years ago.

Thursday morning, they were given the keys to their very own home near Belvedere and Fontenelle Boulevard.

This comes about due to the efforts of YouthBuild Omaha students.

They built the home with the help of Habitat For Humanity and Goodwill Industries.

The teens gained valuable experience they can take with them as they move forward with their own lives.

“You’re learning so much from doing it i mean you take what you learn here and you can use it at home, you can use it anywhere and you wind up helping people and i like helping people and everybody here likes helping and that was the best part about everything just helping out,” YouthBuild Omaha student Marcus Hill said.

The family dedicated more than 300 hours of work themselves and Kul said they are looking forward to becoming a part of the North Omaha community.

“When I came here I don’t think that I’d have a house,” she said. “But I think now we have our own home and yeah, I’m so happy and so excited.”

The Sasankhars have two young children and other relatives that live nearby.

View more here.

 

 

 

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Dispelling the ‘One Person Can’t Make a Difference’ Myth

Public awareness about the value of recycling is at an all-time high, but currently fewer than 35 percent of households and 10 percent of businesses in the United States recycle, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Sometimes the enormity of a problem, such as massive amounts of waste headed to our landfills, keeps people from taking small steps that could add up to make a big positive change. It’s the “one person can’t make a difference” myth.

November 15 is America Recycles Day, an initiative of Keep America Beautiful. This national commemoration is the perfect opportunity to raise public awareness while encouraging action, because every person can make a difference.

Goodwill Omaha is a proud supporter of America Recycles Day. Environmental sustainability has been central to Goodwill’s mission since its founding 111 years ago. Goodwill’s donation-resale model extends the life of usable clothing and other goods, and earns revenue for Goodwill job training programs, employment placement services and other important social services that benefitted more than 6.7 million people last year alone. In the process, thousands of tons of waste are diverted from landfills.

Goodwill offers this advice for America Recycles Day in hopes that occasional recyclers will become regular recyclers.

1. Make it simple.

2. Make it meaningful.

This model works successfully for Goodwill’s donated goods retail business. We provide easy-to-access donation drop-off points in convenient locations. We demonstrate how donations make a positive impact on the donor and the community: Donations are sold in stores. Store revenues fund job training and career services. People get jobs. Families grow stronger. Communities thrive.

The model can work for recycling as well. Breaking down your efforts into simple steps can help. To start, choose to recycle one item — whether it’s newspaper, aluminum or glass — for six months. After that time period, start recycling a second item that you use regularly until it becomes a habit. You can continue to add to your recycling efforts as they become part of your daily life.

Then, understand that your actions have impact. For example, recycling one aluminum product can save enough energy to allow you to listen to a full music album on an iPod. Recycling 100 cans can light a room for two weeks.

Whether you donate regularly to Goodwill or just recycle your aluminum cans, you help dispel the myth that small acts aren’t important. On America Recycles Day, it’s appropriate to celebrate all the ways we collectively and individually protect the planet.

Click here to see our additional recycling efforts.

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RECYCLING IN 2015

CLOTHING & ACCESSORIES

Baled clothing: 506,173 lbs.
Shoes: 19,225 lbs.
Stuffed toys: 351 lbs.
Books: 11,065 lbs.
Purses and belts: 0 lbs.
Cell phones: 0 lbs.
2015 YTD total: 536,814 lbs.

DELL RECONNECT MATERIALS

Printers: 12,204 lbs.
CRT monitors: 6,049 lbs.
Keyboards: 2,152 lbs.
Plastic: 563 lbs.
Power: 1,134 lbs.
CPUs: 7,304 lbs.
LCD monitors & laptops: 4,089 lbs.
Wire: 793 lbs.
Misc.: 2,689 lbs.
Batteries: 1,432 lbs.
Motherboards: 0 lbs.
Media: 117 lbs.
Toner / Ink: 71 lbs.
2015 YTD total: 38,597 lbs.

OTHER RECYCLED ITEMS

Cardboard: 29,575 lbs.
Mixed paper: 1,825 lbs.
Plastic: 2,435 lbs.
Aluminum breakage: 1,968 lbs.
Low-grade wire: 2,964 lbs.
Aluminum cans: 44 lbs.
#2 copper wire: 0 lbs.
2014 YTD total: 38,811 lbs.

Grand Total=
614,222 lbs.

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#ThriftyThursday – America!

It’s a great time to be an American!  The US Men’s Soccer Team is doing well in the World Cup – they play Germany today in the final game of the group round.  And, of course, the Fourth of July is just over a week away.  It’s time to stock up on your Americana, and is there a better way to show your American spirit than shopping at a place that also help your fellow Americans find meaningful employment?  I think not!

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First, you need to decorate your home.  Whether your watching the game or a fireworks show, show your spirit for the season with cute decorations to fit any taste.  These two thrifted pieces (both with tags still attached) range from $.99 to $2.99.

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If you’re ready to make a bigger investment in the patriotism in your house – this red loveseat is a great piece.  Throw on some blue pillows and a white throw, and you’ve got the perfect place to relax while watching Clint Dempsy score some goals.

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Obviously, you’ll need some red, white, and blue clothes.  Goodwill has a wide selection, from work-appropriate to super-casual.  The wide assortment of shirts seen here range from $.99 for the tank top to $5.49 for the Express brand button-up dress shirt.

Get your flags out, get your grills going, and celebrate America this week, with the help of Goodwill.  USA!

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#ThriftyThursday – ROAD TRIP!

It’s starting to feel like summer.  Kids are out of school, the temperatures are rising, and the sun is shining.  That can only mean one thing – vacation time!  If your family is anything like mine, road trips are the vacation standard.  Hitting the road instead of flying can be a real cost-saver for families, and preparing for your trip at Goodwill can help you save even more.

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Music has to be number one on your list of things to pack.   Long car rides often mean hitting places with no radio stations (or at least none that can be agreed upon).  Let each member of the family pick 2-3 disks that they have never heard of, and see if you like them.  They might be terrible, they might be awesome.  But for as little as $.99, it’ll be a great new experience for the whole family.

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When music gets boring, you need to pull out a book.  Goodwill has books for all ages, at a fraction of the list prices, including classics and newer reads.  Books are as low as $.99, and you can encourage your kids to read a little over the summer.  While your looking for books, pick up some unused puzzle books for a family activity to help pass the time!

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You’ll likely be stopping at a hotel or motel along the way.  The kids will need their swimming suits to keep them entertained (and work off some pent-up energy).  These selections for boys & girls are less than $5, and are in nearly new condition.

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The car gets cold, so grab a blanket or two for added comfort on the road.

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And you’ll need some roomy bags for your clothes and other necessities.  These two roller bags are a steal at less than $10.

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Last, you will definitely need snacks.  Goodwill’s check out stands or the Coffee House at 72nd and Ames are great places to find the needed fuel for the long trip ahead of you.

Keep your hard-earned money for more souvenirs, interesting foods, or that nicer hotel room (the one with the hot waffle makers).  Enjoy your summer travels with the help of Goodwill!

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#ThriftyThursday – Re-done

#ThriftyThursday often features ready-to-use items, which are great for the everyday shopper.  But Goodwill also has items for the more adventurous.

For this #ThriftyThursday, we reached out to the awesome ladies at The Vintage Chandelier (6914 Maple Street, Omaha).  A new local business, The Vintage Chandelier specializes in re-done, one-of-a-kind furniture and accessories.  Laci, one of the co-owners, recently found this awesome, but well-worn, matching vintage vanity with mirror and dresser at Goodwill’s WearHouse, where it was priced to move quickly.  And their even on rollers!  How cute (and functional) is that?

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As you see, the pieces were not ready to put in a home, but their unique beauty was still intact.  The wood inlays have beautiful detailing and the dresser drawer pulls are in great condition.  Laci recognized this one-of-a-kind piece and brought it to her studio, where she got to work.

After some TLC, and a lot of sanding, the furniture was ready to be painted.  Laci chose a vintage shade of white paint for a finish that would match anyone’s home décor.

 

 

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The finished project looks gorgeous on the Vintage Chandelier’s sales floor, ready to be purchased by some lucky shopper!  Laci’s work shows that Goodwill finds don’t always have to be perfect – in fact, sometimes flaws can allow for true beauty to shine.

Goodwill thanks Laci for supporting our mission of changing lives & strengthening communities through education, training and work!  Keep the great finds coming!

 

Find out more about the Vintage Chandelier on their website http://thevintagechandelier.com/, Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Vintage-Chandelier/524073191013309 or in-person at their store in West Benson.

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#ThriftyThursday – but it was 99 cents!

Over a month ago, we redesigned and re-launched our Reserve: Goodwill in the Market store.  It is now Reserve99 – the “99” means that EVERYTHING in the store is only $0.99!  Seriously!

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The selection at Reserve 99 is huge, and it’s changing daily, but there are always great finds.  On a recent trip to the Old Market, I found some great pieces  – again, all only $0.99!

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Abercromie and Fitch plaid shorts and green sheer blouse.

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Blue Old Navy boyfriend-fit crop pants, white long-sleeve Hanes tee, and lightweight red cardigan

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Pink loose cable-knit sweater and white bermuda shorts, both Banana Republic

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Black Old Navy cardigan and gray Apt. 9 dress pants

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Green cashmere Ann Taylor sweater and American Eagle jeans

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Off-white Fossil sweater, pink Ann Taylor v-neck dress

All of these outfits are less than $3!  That’s a whole week of clothing for only $13 – you can’t look this good for this little anywhere but Reserve 99!

We won’t leave out the guys.  This pant and shirt combo is perfect for work, only $1.98.

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Black Dockers, gray and white striped Van Heusen dress shirt.

And Reserve 99 has more than just clothes.  Find a variety of unique household items, games, and accessories, for only $.99.

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There’s nothing cooler than spending $0.99 on a pair of sunglasses.

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It’s time to save.  Look at this cute metal alarm clock!

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Get help adding up all your savings with this brand new math bingo game

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Who could pass up these owl statues ($0.99 each!)

What are you waiting for?  Head to Reserve 99 TODAY!  Happy hunting!  And look out for owls!

 

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