New Goodwill program restoring more than furniture

New Goodwill program restoring more than furniture
Youth Restoration warehouse and workers. (Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)
Youth Restoration warehouse and workers. (Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)
(Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)
(Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)
Items for sale at furniture showcase (Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)
Items for sale at furniture showcase (Source: Goodwill of Southern Arizona)

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Goodwill's Youth Restoration Project is one of five programs aimed to help adjudicated youth. Basically, minors who have been in and out of the juvenile justice system.

The program has been around for about seven months and restores more than just old beat up furniture.

It helps young adults turn their lives around. A temporary position that helps them get to their next career goal. It is funded through Goodwill dollars.

So far, four young adults have been a part of it. Two went back to high school and are working on getting their diplomas.

They learn a wide-range of skills from mechanical to carpentry. That's not all.

Eric Roller, Manager of the Youth Programs says, "It teaches them soft skills, meaning showing up to work on time, dressing the part, proper language and etiquette, all the things that will help him keep a job."

Dominique Chavez has been in and out of the juvenile court system for various offenses. He came from the Goodwill Good Futures program, which is a 30-month program funded by the Department of Labor. It's a grant that helps adjudicated youth work on employment skills.

"Before he came here, he couldn't communicate very well with others," said Roller. "Since the program, he's been able to give presentations, talk about his goals, his future, so we can help him. He shows up to work on time and shows passion."

"I get lost in the furniture. It's like arts and crafts to me. It keeps me busy and out of trouble," said Chavez.

Goodwill is hiring one full-time Youth Restoration Associate. The requirement is you have to be 18-21 years old. Hiring focus is for adjudicated youth, but that is not a requirement.

This week furniture restored by project participants will be showcased at the Goodwill store on Houghton and Golf Links, beginning at 8 a.m. daily.  An average piece of furniture is $60. The program not only helps the youths, it also saves on average two tons of furniture and bikes a month from going into the landfill.

For more information, just head to www.goodwillsouthernaz.org

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