<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=761998377238353&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">
toggle mobile navigation
Put your financial donation to work in your community.

Goodwill Mission Stories

banner image

Jonathan | Finding community through Boys and Men of Color

Jonathan found a community that helped him embrace his identity, vocalize goals, and promote inclusivity and self-acceptance through Goodwill’s Boys and Men of Color program.


The Boys and Men of Color program is an eight-week learning and mentorship experience for men of color focusing on workplace skills and personal development, including goal setting, financial education and peer networking.

Jonathan’s community connection led him to join Goodwill’s store and donation center in Melrose Park, Illinois as a donation attendant where he could contribute to the betterment of his surroundings through Goodwill’s mission: Connecting people to work. Preparing people for life.

Aspiring to advance at Goodwill, the Boys and Men of Color program provided a space to explore career opportunities, gain experience and meet his goal to enhance communications skills.

Jonathan not only improved his communication but found his voice, advocating for himself by vocalizing his goals and recognizing his value within the community and his role at Goodwill.

“The program has given me a deeper appreciation for my unique perspectives and experiences that come from my diverse background as a person of color and what it brings to the workplace,” expresses Jonathan.
“It’s important to help others find and utilize their voice, and Jonathan’s transformation in confidently navigating and contributing to the world around him is truly remarkable,” shares Miguel Frias, program manager.

Jonathan broadened his understanding of others and learned to foster inclusivity sharing:

"The program helped me recognize the importance of embracing and celebrating people for their authentic selves, including my own identity as a Mexican American man. This newfound understanding has instilled a deep commitment to promoting inclusivity and cultivating self-acceptance within myself and in the spaces I navigate.”

He also gained a supportive community of men of color to connect over shared experiences.

“Having meaningful conversations and sharing personal stories with other men of color brought comfort in knowing that we are not alone in facing challenges that come our way. This gave a sense of belonging that will stick with me,” he says.

As a college student, Jonathan found the program’s life skills focus, including money management, beneficial for managing credit, student loans, and personal finances.

“The program has given me the tools to make informed decisions about using credit and has shown me the importance of being responsible with it.”

The program continues supporting Jonathan’s goals by connecting him to resources to build a personalized development plan to help him work toward owning a business after graduation.

Mission Support Center
Tel: (414) 847-4200

James O. Wright Center forWork & Training
Tel: (414) 353-6400

Metropolitan Chicago -
Tel: (312) 994-1440