Mental Health Awareness Month

Did you know that May is Mental Health Awareness Month? A mental health disorder is a disease that causes mild to severe disturbances in thought and/or behavior, resulting in an inability to cope with life’s ordinary demands and routines. There are over 200 classified forms of mental illness but some examples include depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, eating disorders, and addictive behaviors. Every year, about 42.5 million American adults suffer from some sort of mental illness.

Mental Health Awareness Month was founded in 1949 by the Mental Health America organization.  Every year during the Month of May, many different organizations (NAMI, MHA, NHA, etc.) run different activities which are based on the theme of that given year. This year’s theme is Life with a Mental Illness. According to the Mental Health America organization’s website, the purpose behind this year’s theme is to call on individuals to share what life with a mental illness feels like for them in words, pictures, and videos. They are encouraged to use the hashtag #mentalillnessfeelslike or submit their work to the MHA website (anonymously, of course). The posts will be collected and displayed on a special page on the MHA website. The MHA believes that posting the hashtag will allow people to speak up about their own experiences, share their points of view with individuals who may be struggling with the same illness, and help others figure out if they are showing signs of a mental illness.

Mental illnesses are very common and there are many symptoms that go along with the different disorders. Because there are so many, it’s hard to pinpoint definite symptoms for all of them together. Some of the more common symptoms include: confused thinking, prolonged sadness, feelings of extreme highs and lows, excessive fears, worries and anxieties, social withdrawal, dramatic changes in eating or sleeping habits, strong feelings of anger, delusions, hallucinations, suicidal thoughts, substance abuse, numerous unexplained physical ailments, or a growing inability to cope with daily problems and activities.

Living with a mental illness is a struggle that many people will experience firsthand or through a friendship or family member. If you want to learn more about mental health disorders, go to or If you think that you or someone you know may have a mental health disorder, contact your doctor right away. Whether you’re struggling with a mental health disorder, know someone who is struggling, or just want to help, remember that you are not alone. Together, we can all raise awareness for mental health and fight the stigma that comes along with these disorders.



YouthBuild/Builders of the Future — WOWT — 4/20/16

Goodwill Omaha’s YouthBuild crew was highlighted during WOWT’s 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. newscasts on 4/20/16.  The segments featured the YouthBuild students’ work on a solar playhouse through the Builders of the Future mentoring program.

Here’s the link …



Family Game Night

Tired of doing the same thing everything night? Looking for fun and affordable activities to do as a family? Stop by your favorite thrift store and pick up everything you need in order to put on a fun-filled family game night. This affordable option will be sure to bring you and your family hours of fun and laughter.

Pack up everyone and head over to Goodwill to pick out your favorite games and even some inexpensive prizes for your winners.  Such a variety, everything from classics to creative family games. When it comes to finding the perfect board game to fit your family, Goodwill is sure to please!

How about the classics?







This tried and true game night favorite is not only fun but also educational. Monopoly will teach your family the importance of money management and wise real estate investments. Take a twist on the traditional with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles version, use your inner turtle powers to conquer the game board.







Settle sibling rivalries with an oldie but a goodie. Checkers lets your kids strategize on how to successfully beat their sibling and settle whose turn it is to wash the dishes or take out the trash.







In the fast paced world of texting, your spelling skills may have taken a hit. Enhance your vocabulary and help your kids with their spelling. By the end of the night Scrabble will have you adding fun new words to add to your conversations.

Let’s get creative!







Fun games that will have your family’s creative juices flowing and have them laughing along the way. Try to figure out what your family is thinking with Conga. Hone your inner artistic skills with Scribblish and create fun drawings that tell stories.

No matter which game you choose, you are sure to have a fun family game night with Goodwill!

Goodwill, good for you, great for the community!

T-Shirt DIY with Goodwill

Have you noticed that you have a lot of t-shirts you completely forgot that you owned? While Goodwill is the perfect place to send all of your old t-shirts, it’s understandable that you may want to keep a few of them for memorabilia. You’re probably thinking, I have a t-shirt from my 4th grade trip to Disney World, there’s no way I can wear this, so what should I do with it? Instead of wearing the too-small shirt, you can breathe new life into it with our DIY projects! Here are a few of my favorites:

T-Shirt quilt

t-shirt quild

A quilt is a great way to display a collection of shirts that you no longer wear.  Add a colorful border and you have a keepsake to cherish for years!

T-shirt bag

tshirt bag

If you don’t have the sewing skills to make an entire quilt, maybe a shirt bag is more your speed – no thread required.  This project is great for kids!

T-shirt headband

tshirt headbands

You can never get enough headbands!  Rock a unique style with these four different t-shirt headband tutorials.

T-shirt pillow

tshirt pillow

Display your team spirit or make a one-of-a-kind room decoration.  Throw pillows are great for all areas of the home and this simple project will make your style shine!


Old t-shirts are great for DIY projects. Don’t have any t-shirts but want to do a DIY project? Head over to Goodwill where there is a plethora of t-shirts at an incredibly affordable price!

Goodwill Work Experience/Autism Awareness — KETV — 4/3/16

A segment during KETV’s 10:00 p.m. newscast on 4/3/16 highlighted Goodwill Omaha’s Work Experience program and Autism awareness.

KETV’s Julie Cornell visited Goodwill’s Bellevue retail store to meet Work Experience student Kayla Smithberg and asked her how the Goodwill program has helped her plan for the future.  Kayla did a GREAT job!

Special thanks to Kayla, Jake Pederson (WE trainer), Lisa Ayala (Bellevue manager), the Bellevue Retail Crew, and Janelle Ellis (DM) for participating in this media opportunity

Here’s the KETV link: