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Testimonials "Why We Give"

Meet Chris and Sarah Stein. They have been store donors to Goodwill for many years and in 2007 decided to increase their support of Goodwill programs and services through making financial gifts. According to Chris, “We like the idea of a virtuous circle — that is, if you pay it forward to help someone, it is maximized, as an individual in need will be helped, an organization is supported, and a community is strengthened. We see supporting long term solutions, like the programs you have at Goodwill that offer training and employment resources for people needing to get back on their feet or a first start, as helping to lessen people’s dependence on safety net services or government programs. We also support other worthy organizations such as the Chicago Food Depository that address urgent needs, but we like to support long term solutions to community problems.”

Chris, a consultant for an area financial services firm, makes his gifts through a matching program at his company. “My company has an arrangement with and my gifts, up to a point, are matched dollar for dollar. That way, Goodwill is getting double the gift and able to serve more individuals. And, I’m a financial consultant so I have to do my due diligence! I like that my donation is going to a highly rated charity with Charity Navigator, we always check the organizations we want to support so we can be confident our donations are doing the most possible good. The old saying of “give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime” is one that we like. I would even take that further and say that by helping that person find a job and be job ready you are also helping employers and the community at large – that’s really maximizing the impact! The community as a whole is realizing the benefits.”

Chris goes on to share that,” one of the things I enjoy most about giving to organizations like Goodwill is having a positive impact on society. You hear so much about community problems in Chicago and wonder what can you do as one person, well giving to an organization that is fiscally responsible and knows how to effectively use every dollar they are given is a way that one person can make a big impact and encourage others to do the same. My wife and I recognize that what you do is not a quick fix, but we feel that we can do more good by supporting organizations that work at the big issues over time.”

Chris and Sarah Stein

Ken Cook has been a loyal donor to Goodwill for many years. During a facility tour to see Goodwill’s mission in action, a conversation started around a data entry project that Ken’s company was looking for help with. Goodwill took on the project and provided 10 individuals who performed data entry on over 200,000 files that made it possible to search for information by computer rather than going through microfiche cards.

One of the individuals who worked on this project was Becca. Becca struggled with reading, writing, and retaining information.  At Goodwill, she was taking Microsoft Office classes such as Word and Excel when asked to participate in the data entry project. Becca worked hard and was the fastest worker on the project.  Both Becca and Ken benefited from the partnership and according to Ken, “Having Goodwill take on this project allowed us to keep the work local rather than outsourcing it. Thank you for a job well done!”

 Ernest Ulrich

Ernie Ulrich will soon donate more than $1.5 million to Chicago-area charities and Goodwill Industries of Metropolitan Chicago is one of the lucky recipents. But there is a twist to this story. Click here to read more