Know the Facts About Goodwill

We encourage you to know the facts and think before you donate…Printable Fact Sheet Button

The internet is  a great source of information but also a great source of misinformation. Know the facts about Goodwill and other organizations before you choose where to generously donate items you no longer need, or make a financial contribution.

1. Goodwill Industries of the Valleys serves 35 counties and 14 cities in Central, Southwest, and Southside, Virginia. 

We’re local. We are right here, living and working in the heart of Virginia. The value of your donations stays here in Virginia, and benefits our neighbors and friends who need help finding employment. Our leadership, including our volunteer Board of Directors, can make decisions and take action based on the specific needs of our service area. And, together we are building a stronger Virginia – one job, one stable family, one changed life at a time!

 

2. We employ nearly 1,000 employees in Central, Southwest, and Southside, Virginia.  

We provide training for the community, and we provide opportunities for our own employees. All of our employees earn minimum wage or more and our full time employees are eligible for benefits including healthcare coverage, paid time off, and retirement savings. We value diversity and inclusion and seek to assist our associates in finding their strengths and advancing them to their fullest potential.

 

3. Goodwill Industries of the Valleys did not fire all employees due to the COVID-19 crisis.  

A Facebook post has been circulating that falsely claims Goodwill fired all of its employees and used the coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to do it. The post is not true: While plenty of Goodwill employees across the country may have lost their jobs as stores have closed due to the outbreak, it’s a gross generalization to say all employees have been fired. The rumor has been debunked here: https://leadstories.com/hoax-alert/2020/04/fact-check-goodwill-did-not-use-covid-19-as-an-excuse-to-fire-all-employees

We can assure you, at Goodwill Industries of the Valleys, that while we have had to temporarily lay-off some employees due to store closings and the crisis, we are keeping them all on their existing health insurance and will be returning them to the same tenure and rate of pay when business returns to normal.

 

4. Bruce Phipps is our CEO, and he definitely doesn’t “own” Goodwill.  

Not everything you see on the internet, email, social media, etc. is true. Unfortunately, Goodwill and several other nonprofits have been targeted with particularly persistent, untrue rumors and messaging that’s been around since 2010 and claims that “Goodwill CEO and owner Mark Curran profits $2.3 million a year.” It looks something like this:

Get Your Facts Straight Image

We added the “False” because – you guessed it! – this information is not true. No one named Mark Curran works, or has ever worked, for any Goodwill organization. The salary/compensation quoted is completely false. As a registered 501(c) 3 not-for-profit organization, Goodwill Industries of the Valleys does not have an owner. Bruce Phipps is our CEO and President. Bruce is a 40+ year veteran of Goodwill and he reports to a local, volunteer Board of Directors. You don’t have to take our word for it; Snopes has also researched and debunked this rumor. Clark Howard has also recently set the record straight on this rumor as well.

Recently, we have seen an “updated graphic” that lists the CEO and Owner of Goodwill as Jim Gibbons who profits $2.3 million a year. This is also FALSE.  Jim Gibbons was the prior CEO of Goodwill Industries International but he was not the owner and did not make $2.3 million a year.

We DO encourage people to think before they donate, and to research their chosen nonprofit before they give. Guidestar.org is a great resource for finding information on nonprofits across the country.

 

5. We devote over 89 cents of every dollar we spend to our mission: training and employment services for people in our communities.

Stewardship is important to us; in fact, it’s one of our core values. We are especially proud of this number and what it says about the efficiency of our operations. We are committed to helping people receive the training they need to gain independence or find employment to allow them to be financially secure.

 

6. Donations are just the beginning. 

Literally! Donations set in motion what we affectionately call “The Circle of Hope.” First, a generous donor decides to give to Goodwill. Then, the donations are processed and sold in one of our retail stores.

That’s when the real magic happens. We turn your donations into jobs! Our stores are for-cause operations, not for-profit. The funds from the sale of donated items support training and employment programs, including our youth, adult, and senior programs as well as our job seeker services and additional training services.

In 2019, we helped 38,239 individuals in need of training and employment services. Of those individuals, 2,921 found work in the community and 2,550 credentials were awarded.

Circle of Hope Infographic - Together we are changing lives

 

Now that you know the facts, please share!