Employment Ready Helps Students Find Business Casual Attire

Employment Ready Helps Students Find Business Casual Attire 

During the last week of March, Megan Sharpe, Goodwill Omaha’s Employment Ready Manager, received a phone call from Rebecca Dunn who teaches at Ralston High School. Dunn is currently teaching a Future Teacher Internship program. The class focuses on preparing students for future interviews and internships. Goodwill Omaha’s Employment Ready program was asked to partner with the Ralston High School class to provide assistance in how to choose appropriate attire for interviews and internships.

Teaming Up

Sharpe met with the class on April 16 to share how Employment Ready provides free one-on-one job readiness services to those unemployed or underemployed in the Omaha Metro.  Sharpe also spoke about proper business casual attire and how to find this clothing at our Goodwill locations. This partnership was an opportunity to educate the youth in the Ralston and Papillion community—by sharing Goodwill Omaha’s mission programs and how our retail stores support those programs.

The next day Sharpe met the Future Teacher Internship class at our Papillion retail store (84th and Giles).

Megan Sharpe Employment Ready Manager - Introduce Students to Papillion Store

Gathered in the front of the store, Sharpe took a moment to show some examples of proper business casual clothing. Among her examples was acceptable attire for a professional interview.

Example of Business Casual Denim

Megan also took time to remind students of the importance in making a great first impression during an interview. The students were encouraged to shop on their own. Sharpe and Dunn offered guidance and support—ensuring students were choosing appropriate business casual options.  

Business Casual Polka Dot Pants

Ralston Students Browsing

Students were able to find garments by category, size, and color in our Papillion retail store. This made it easy for them to build outfits that paired well with their personalities.

Ralston Male Students Shown Examples of Business Casual Shirts

Ralston Students Share Finds

Interview Ready

Finally, all 17 of the Future Teacher Internship students walked away with business casual outfits for their upcoming interviews.

Ralston Student Checks Out

Each student was given a $20 gift card, which was provided by both Ralston High and Goodwill Omaha. This gave students the ability to find a full outfit. Also showing them how beneficial shopping at Goodwill is while on a tight budget. The students enjoyed the hunt for unique and trendy items they may not have normally found at other retailers. While using the provided gift cards, students were educated on how donating and shopping at Goodwill Omaha supports our mission programs such as Employment Ready.

Ralston Students All Found Outfits


JoshMeyer-MarketingSpecialist

Written by: Josh Meyer • Marketing Specialist
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Clean Sweep – Living with Less Mess

Clean Sweep – Living with Less Mess

Draw the curtains and let the sun shine in because it’s time to do some spring cleaning. Wondering where to start or what to do with those household items you can’t wait to move on from?  We will be sharing some helpful tips on how and what to clean; along with getting the most out of your spring cleaning endeavors.

Science Behind Spring Cleaning  

Do you sometimes wonder why so many of us have the urge to tidy up or do our most detailed cleaning this time of year? You can thank biology for that. HowStuffWorks’ blog post Why Do We Traditionally Clean Our Homes At the Beginning of Spring explains that due to lack of sunlight exposure our bodies produce a hormone called melatonin that causes sleepiness in humans. Research shows that as the days grow longer and we are exposed to more sunlight we have more energy. Hence the reason we become more active in the warmer sun drenched months. With your replenished energy supply, you are free to tackle all of those cleaning and organizing tasks that have been pushed aside over the winter months.

Clean Slate

Cleaning SuppliesMost of us know that during winter months dust tends to settle and allergens can be trapped indoors due to lack of air movement and fresh air entering our homes. A great place to start your cleaning is dusting every nook and cranny. If you are a new homeowner or renter, try finding guidelines for your spring cleaning while tailoring them to your living space. HGTV has provided what seems like a fool-proof cleaning list to help guide you and ensure your home is left spotless. Click here to view their easy to follow cleaning checklist. We suggest keeping lists like this on hand year round. Consistently cleaning your home throughout the year will significantly lessen the amount of work you have to do come next spring.

Let’s Talk Minimalism.

Minimalism is growing in popularity. Some consider it just another bandwagon fad, yet others consider it a lifestyle choice. Those who have chosen to live with a more minimal mindset claim to be freed from the control of material items. In the end those individuals find they have less to clean and take care of. Joshua Fields Millburn and Ryan Nicodemus expand upon minimalism and give helpful advice on how to live minimally on their website The Minimalists. Maybe you have thought about living a minimal lifestyle, your wardrobe could be a great place to start. If you decide to make a switch towards minimalism, you can donate your unwanted items to your local Goodwill.

At Goodwill Omaha the items you donate are either sold in our retail stores, or recycled. Keeping thousand of pounds of goods from going into the landfills. The sales from your donations directly support the employment services and programs we provide. In 2017 our employment services and mission programs served 1,797 people.

Declutter and Donate

A large part of spring cleaning is decluttering your space. Naturally, some areas of our home tend to become more cluttered than others. Trying to tackle clutter can be quite overwhelming for some of us. You’ll probably want to set up quick, efficient tasks similar to these tasks that Good Housekeeping has listed. Doing so will help guide you toward the end results you are seeking. We suggest going through the areas listed below and setting aside all of the items you no longer need, use, or want.

Spring Clean

  • Closets (clothing, linen, etc.)
  • Junk Drawers
  • Office Space
  • Pantries
  • Storage Rooms
  • Garage

 

Click here to view Goodwill Omaha’s acceptable donations guideline. You can donate those items at any of our conveniently located donation pods or donation centers. To find the location nearest you, click here.


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Written by: Josh Meyer • Marketing Specialist
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Spring Into Your New Look

Spring Into Your New Look

Spring is here and we will be seeing brighter days soon—though it may not seem true with this unpleasant April weather. Nonetheless it is time to start unpacking our spring clothes. You’ll most likely want to take some time to analyze your wardrobe. Are you holding onto garments that have served you well but now need a new home? What pieces are you missing from your selection to update your look? Today we’re going to share our newest addition to our Look Book—giving you some inspiration on how to update your spring wardrobe.

Spring Forward and Let Go.

Many of us hold onto things much longer than needed. Realizing what can go and what can stay in your closet will help you assess your needs for the upcoming seasons. The blog post Closet Hacks: How to Know When It’s Time to Donate Your Clothes gives you some good ideas on how to easily say goodbye to that pair of denim that you haven’t worn in two years. There’s probably at least one item in all of our closets that we haven’t touched in quite some time. Is it really worth keeping or could you benefit from something new in its place? This is the perfect time to evaluate your wardrobe and take out the old to bring in the new.

For those who are environmentally conscious—donating to Goodwill will keep your clothing out of the landfills. By donating to any of Goodwill’s conveniently located donation centers, you are directly supporting our programs in the community. Click here to find a donation center in your neighborhood.  

Dress Your Hangers.

First you need to evaluate your wardrobe and pinpoint your needs for the upcoming season. As a result, you will have some shopping to do! In our Spring Look Book we have put together some outfits that will have you ready for any occasion.  Click here to view our top picks for this season.

White Sweater Tank - Brown Wide Leg Pant            Tassel Necklace

One great benefit to shopping at Goodwill is that you can fully stock and expand upon your wardrobe without breaking the bank. Plus, you won’t feel so guilty come next year when you’re ready to move on to something else. You’ll be able to get a handful of items at the same price as one new item at the mall.

There are plenty of savvy shoppers out there who take full advantage of thrift markets. Likewise, we suggest you join in on the fun and savings. Shopping at your local Goodwill directly supports our programs and services in the community. Click here to learn more about the programs and services we provide to the Omaha metro and surrounding communities.

Mix and Match.

Finding garments that are versatile is a key component to building a great wardrobe. We suggest buying some staple garments that make you look and feel great. Whether you are dressing up or dressing down; primary, versatile clothing is a must for all wardrobes. Satisfy yourself. Focus on what works for you instead of constantly seeking the next best thing on all the online fashion sites. Doing so will give your wardrobe the substance you may be seeking. Check out The 9 Most Versatile Closet Staples to see what every woman needs in their closet. Not so fast gentlemen. Having versatile, staple pieces of clothing in your wardrobe applies to you as well. Here are 21 Things Every Man Should Have in His Closet. Take it from the gents at GQ, you’ll be thanking them later.

Items found in these blogs are just some of the styles you should be looking for at your local thrift store. By no means do you need to go spend hundreds of dollars on one single item to get these looks. Visit your favorite Goodwill retail location. Often while keeping your eyes peeled for good finds; you will almost always be able to find items that fall into these categories for a much better price. Keep in mind that our Look Book and other articles posted here are just guides to help inspire your creativity. Be yourself and embrace your own personal style—wear it with confidence.


JoshMeyer-MarketingSpecialist

Written by: Josh Meyer • Marketing Specialist
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Find Your Creative Style With Goodwill Omaha’s Look Book

Find Your Creative Style With Goodwill Omaha’s Look Book

Inner Creativity.

Do you ever find yourself seeking a creative nudge for your wardrobe? First of all, it can be difficult to find your inner creative self—especially in today’s saturated clothing industry. It can also be tiresome and costly to keep up with the status quo. Personally styling your look is a common way for you to express yourself. However, most of us need guidelines, tips, or advice when creating looks and expanding our wardrobes. In the blog post 9 Steps to Defining Your Personal Style, Kat Collings nails down steps for developing your personal style. 

Look to be Inspired.

All you need is a little imagination and maybe some images to inspire you. We have a fun new way to share creative looks that you can achieve by shopping at your local Goodwill. Click here to follow our Look Book for fun and creative new ways to expand your wardrobe and shop for upcoming seasons. The possibilities are endless when you shop at Goodwill. Did you know that each time you shop at our retail stores, the revenue generated is used to support our employment and training programs for individuals with disabilities and other disadvantages?

Eleventh Hour.

As we move into April, Prom season is in full swing. Maybe you have had a tough time finding the right dress at the right price. If so, we have some amazing dresses for you to choose from at our retail locations. We visited our Benson Park location and found designer prom dresses from Rachel Allen, Blush Prom, Sherri Hill, Blondie Nites by Stacey Sklar, and more. We also found some pumps and heels that will knock your socks off, pun intended. Regardless of the look you are going for, we’ve got some gorgeous designer dresses that will remedy your last minute prom night wardrobe crisis.  


Rachel Allen Dress - Mermaid - Prom Look BookBlush Prom Dress - Violet - Prom Look Book

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Click here to learn more about the programs you are supporting while
perfecting your last minute prom needs.


Written by: Josh Meyer • Marketing Specialist
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Penny-Pinching for the Perfect DIY Prom Dress

Penny-Pinching for the Perfect DIY Prom Dress

Finding the perfect dress for prom has become taxing. With so many fits, colors, and styles to choose from—it can be difficult to know where to start looking. Oh yeah, lets not forget about that price tag either. As a result, you may not always be satisfied with the hunt of that perfect prom dress. So why not create your own? Learn how to re-purpose a dress into a DIY creation and restore the fun in your prom experience.

What’s in this prom season?

After doing some research, we have put together a list of what you might find to be in style this prom season.

  • Lace Detail and Overlay
  • Pastel Colors
  • Ultra Violet
  • Off the Shoulder
  • High Slits
  • Plunging Necklines
  • Two-Piece Dresses
  • Halter Tops
  • Chiffon

While these may be great suggestions for this season. Don’t be afraid to express yourself and get creative. Think outside the box.

Where to find your dress.

Try Goodwill, no seriously, you would be amazed at the selection of dresses most Goodwill stores have. Frequently visiting your favorite Goodwill retail location will give you an advantage as new product comes in daily. If you have never shopped at a Goodwill before, you’ll probably want to start. You can save your pretty pennies and score some awesome finds. While there are DIY-ers that create their own prom dresses, we suggest repurposing instead of starting from scratch. This will give you a head start in creating your masterpiece. Need some inspiration? Click here to find a gallery of DIY prom dress ideas.

Creating your perfect prom dress.

You may find a dress you like, but may not be quite head over heels for. There’s a solution for that! Do you have sewing skills? If not, try finding a friend who can help you in that area. Adding different materials such as lace and chiffon can create layers and add to the wow factor of your dress. It’s a great way to get the look you are going for without too much work. Not a lover of lace or chiffon? It can be just as easy to remove. You can also use crystals to create a dress that captures and reflects light in all the right places.

You’ll be able to find those supplies at your local fabric or craft store such as: Hobby Lobby or Michael’s. If you are up for a challenge, Wendy gives you a great tutorial on making a custom chiffon dress. You may also want to check out her blog, With Wendy, for more amazing DIY ideas.

Finding the right fit.

If you fall in love with a dress that isn’t your size and needs some updating, don’t fret. Be open to the idea of having your dress tailored. You can expand your selection by doing so. Finding a good tailor may seem tough, but there are plenty of tailors out there who specialize in custom fits. Scheduling a fitting with your tailor before the work begins is also important. Your fitting will give you the opportunity to communicate your vision and build a relationship with your tailor of choice.

Don’t be afraid to ask for what you want. You might be surprised at what your tailor can do. Communication is key. You want to give your tailor as much direction as possible. As a result of having a custom fit, you can make a statement with your now one-of-a-kind dress that looks and feels custom made just for you. In the blog post What Every Woman Should Know About Looking Better in Clothes Zac Posen says “The right tailoring can make any garment work for any body”. You can follow Zac on twitter for more inspiration.

Share your creation.

We encourage you to share your creations with us! Use the hashtag #PromAtGoodwill if you found your dress, or any part of your ensemble at one our Goodwill Omaha locations. Be sure to tag us at @goodwillomaha for a chance to be featured on our social media pages. At Goodwill, our mission is to change lives and strengthen communities through education, training, and work. When you shop with Goodwill Omaha you are directly supporting our programs and employment services here in our community.


Written by: Josh Meyer • Marketing Specialist
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Announcing Senior Discount Days!

Exciting news! Senior Discount Days is here! On the first Wednesday of each month, customers 55 years of age and above, will receive 10% off their entire purchase. See store for details!

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Work Experience Students Support Goodwill’s Retail Stores

Goodwill’s Work Experience program provides young adults with disabilities the opportunity to gain exposure to a work situation in a supportive environment. Eight Goodwill locations host students for a few hours a day during the school year. Most students work in one of Goodwill’s retail stores, but some students are able to get a behind-the-scenes look at Goodwill’s Retail Operations Center.

The Retail Operations Center at 72nd and F Street houses Goodwill’s logistics operations to help the retail stores operate smoothly. The Retail Operations Center services all of Goodwill’s 15 retail stores, donation pods, Attended Donation Centers and community donation drives.

My'Kel tagging donated clothesNew this year, Work Experience students utilize five new hanging and sorting stations. When Goodwill receives donated goods through community donation drives, donation pods, and Attended Donation Centers, those goods need to be sorted, tagged and hung up. However, the Retail Operations Center is not a retail store and therefore does not always have staff to complete these tasks. That’s where Work Experience students are able to step in and help out.

 

Work Experience students are trained to follow the same procedures for hanging and sorting as employees in Goodwill’s retail stores. Clothes arrive in gaylords (large cardboard boxes). Then the students sort the clothes, hang them on the rack and follow guidelines to determine the appropriate tag to attach.

Zach selecting price tags

Once the clothes are tagged and hung, they are either sent out to a Goodwill retail store or stored for later use. The extra help of Work Experience students at the Retail Operations Center allows Goodwill’s retail stores to remain fully stocked even if donations slow at that location. Their support allows Goodwill’s retail operations to keep running smoothly.

Work Experience students Zach, Mikeala and My’Kel enjoy working in the hanging and sorting stations because it keeps them busy and helps the day move fast. Work Experience trainer Patty explains, “This is a terrific job for our students. They are learning skills that are directly applicable to any retail job as well as basic employment skills like following guidelines and procedures.”

Goodwill’s Work Experience program is proud to support the work of Goodwill’s retail stores while providing students exposure to a work environment. Next time you shop at Goodwill, remember that the clothing you purchase may have been sorted and tagged by a Work Experience student.

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It’s Time For The Boo!dwill Halloween Costume Contest

The BOO!dwill Halloween Costume Contest won’t stay dead, nor should it! Because it’s that time a year again when you need to start thinking “Halloween costume” and “Goodwill” in the same sentence!

Goodwill is an awesome place to shop for Halloween costumes. Are you someone who likes to dream up some creative outfit and enjoys the hunt for just the right pieces? We have fifteen stores around town where you can find those costume ingredients. Or are you someone who just wants a quick and easy costume so you’re not the person dressed up as “suburbanite” or “adult” at the Halloween party? We’ve got plenty of more traditional costumes too! And no matter which camp you fall into, your costume purchases at Goodwill stores help put people to work — and they can win you some treats.

We want to see what you’ve come up with by shopping at our stores, so it’s time show off your costume and win prizes in the process — by entering the BOO!dwill Halloween Costume Contest!

To enter:
1. Between now and 5 p.m. on Wednesday, November 1, 2017, e-mail a photo of yourself in a costume you either purchased or assembled from items purchased at an Omaha area Goodwill to [email protected].

Updated: This years contest will be based on Facebook likes. Please visit the Boo!dwill 2017 Facebook Album and like your favorite costume. Only “likes” will determine our winner, shares and comments are not needed in order to win.

2. In the email, tell us your name, how to contact you, and at which store(s) you bought your costume.

That’s it! We’ll be sharing the entries as we receive them on our Facebook wall. On Monday, November 6, 2017, the voting will close, and the top three will all receive Goodwill gift certificates ($100 for 1st place, $50 for 2nd, $25 for 3rd)!

If you have any questions, post them here in the comments or send us an e-mail at [email protected]. And if you’d like some inspiration, check out 2015 finalists or television coverage of some of our Halloween offerings:

Finding Affordable Halloween Costumes a Real Treat – WOWT Omaha

Good luck!

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10 Things You Should Never, Ever Pass Up If You See Them at Goodwill

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All Bark and No Bite: Goodwill® Deals for Dog-Lovers

Since pets are members of the family, too, it only makes sense that we want to pour as much effort into their needs as we do into our own. That means that we’re often tempted to customize their accessories to suit their furry little personalities. So, today we’ll be sharing some drool-worthy doggy decor and dressings made from Goodwill finds!

Photo 1

Image via landeeseelandeedo.com

Big ugly dog beds can be such an eye-sore, but owners often cringe to think that their darlings have to curl up on the hard floor. What’s a person to do? Well, make a place for Rover to sleep that looks as cute as it does cozy. For inspiration, check out this round-up put together by blogger Landeelu. I can’t decide which one is my favorite, but I’ve narrowed it down to either the Goodwill dresser that has been hollowed out into a nook for bigger dogs or the bed for small dogs that’s made from a thrifted sweater. Which one would your doggo dig the most?

Photo2

Image via petfinder.com

There are plenty of options for dog collars out there, but they all mostly follow the same bland design—nylon webbing with a plastic buckle. If the color and pattern variation of that sort of collar have never been stylish enough for your best friend, why not dress up their dog tags with a fancy DIY collar? Make your mutt her his or her own quirky collar by shopping the kids’ section of Goodwill in search of a button-down shirt in a pattern you like. Snip out the collar of the shirt, attach tags, and button it around your pup’s neck! Thanks to Goodwill Industries of Southeastern Louisiana (New Orleans) for sharing this great idea on their DIY Goodwill Finds Pinboard. Click through for even more easy thrift-craft ideas like this one.

Photo 3

Image via facebook.com/GoodwillSouthernAZ

Doggy decor is a fun way to capture our love of our best friends within the context of our homes. These little ceramic pups shared by Goodwill Industries of Southern Arizona (Tucson) on their Facebook page would make perfect paperweights or decorative accents. As you browse Goodwill’s shelves on your next visit, keep a look out for figurines of your favorite breed. And don’t let a terrible paint job stop you! Thrifted finds can be quickly covered up with a fresh color for customized decor. (Psst! If you’re in the Tucson area, make sure you click through to your local Goodwill’s Facebook page to get the details for the Dress Your Pet Contest which runs through August 31st!)

Hopefully these ideas will send you and your hound off into the weekend with tails wagging. While you shop for project supplies, don’t forget that your support helps Goodwill organizations change lives by training unemployed or underemployed people for careers in fields such as automotive services, construction, health care, information technology, manufacturing, hospitality and retail as well as in other high-demand industries. So, have fun with your dog-themed DIYs as you and your pup benefit your local community.

This blog shared from Goodwill Industries International. See original blog here.

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