While you may not expect to find a Goodwill operation on a military base, Goodwill Great Lakes provides food service, administrative, logistic services and laundry to both Sailors and recruits at the Navy's only boot camp— Naval Station Great Lakes in Great Lakes, IL.
The U.S. Navy, Goodwill and SourceAmerica are partnered at Naval Station Great Lakes through the AbilityOne Program, providing employment opportunities for people with significant disabilities. Our trained professionals work closely with individuals with significant disabilities to provide meaningful employment with a comprehensive career ladder enabling them to become independent and self-sustaining individuals who contribute to their communities.
In fiscal year 2013, Goodwill staff served nearly 8.5 million meals, handled 2.4 million pieces of mail, issued 2.7 million uniform pieces to Sailors and recruits and processed 14 million pounds of laundry. This relationship of more than 35 years has been repeatedly recognized and honored by multiple organizations as a stellar example of a partnership at its best.
U.S. Navy and Goodwill Missions Aligned
U.S. Navy Mission:
To deliver highly skilled, technically proficient, disciplined and motivated Sailors to the Fleet.
Goodwill Great Lakes Mission:
To provide training, employment and supportive services for people with disabilities or disadvantages who seek greater independence.
To create employment opportunities for people with significant disabilities.
Partnered for Success
A partnership between the U.S. Navy, Goodwill Great Lakes and SourceAmerica makes sense because the missions of each are aligned and integrated. Naval Station Great Lakes’ mission is to train and supply the Fleet with Sailors; Goodwill’s is to provide work experience and training for people with significant disabilities and high quality services to the Navy. For Goodwill, the installation means employment for 700 people with disabilities including visual, hearing and physical impairments; developmental disabilities; and mental illness.
The partnership also allows those unable to join the military the chance to serve their country by supporting every man and woman that enters the U.S. Navy.
Food and Logistics Services
In February 1998, Goodwill was awarded the largest food service project in the AbilityOne Program. Goodwill provides food service, record-keeping, facility support services, environmental services, uniform issue, postal service and warehousing for the Sailors and recruits at Naval Station Great Lakes. Goodwill employees receive training and support that help them develop work skills that can lead to future employment in a competitive marketplace.
Since 1996, Goodwill has provided administrative services at Naval Station Great Lakes. Our presence at the base provides a range of administrative support services to include medium and high level clerical duties.
Goodwill’s laundry service began in 1974. Naval Station Great Lakes was our first customer and, today, remains a valued one. With support, program participants are able to process 1.2 millions of pounds of laundry in 2013 for the U.S. Navy at Naval Station Great Lakes. Every load, from pick-up to delivery, is processed within 48 hours.
Goodwill operations focus on customer service, embracing continuous process improvement, including the practices of Kaizen and Lean Six Sigma. We continually identify ways to improve the work process and customer service, all with employee participation.
Interested applicants for employment with Goodwill Great Lakes click here.
- NISH Certificate of Achievement Award (to provide employment and training to Americans with significant disabilities), 2006, 2011, 2013
- Quality Work Environment—Gold Level Achievement Award, 2012
- American Culinary Federation Achievement of Excellence Award, 2011
- North Chicago Community High School Pathways to Professions, (Employer Advisory Group) Certificate of Recognition 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011
- Allendale Association’s Vocational Education Program Certificate of Appreciation 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010
- SAFER Foundation Recognition of Dedicated Service May, 2008, 2009
- Chicago Commission on Human Relations Advisory Council on Veterans Affairs Certificate of Appreciation for supporting veterans with disabilities (presented by Mayor Daley) Nov., 2007
- Thresholds employer award for hiring people with disabilities, March, 2008.
- American Legion, Department of Illinois, Employer of the Year, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2007
- American Legion, National Employer Certificate of Recognition, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2007
- Racine Friendship County Clubhouse, Employer Certificate of Recognition 2005, 2006, 2007
- Naval Station Great Lakes, "Shining Star" award to John VanB for "Outstanding Support to the Transition Assistance Program Workshops" 2006
- Lake County Coalition to Reduce Recidivism, Employer of the Year 2006
- Haymarket, Employer of the Year 2005
- Employer Award, Illinois Department of Employment Security, 30 September, 2004, "In recognition of outstanding services to the Veterans of Illinois"
- Jewish Vocational Services, Employer of the Year 2004
- Anixter Center, Employer of the Year 2004