Goodwill helps woman onto dream career path

One of the most important pieces to a successful recovery from substance use disorder is often also one of the biggest hurdles– securing employment.

Brittany, who celebrated a year of sobriety on March 20, had been forthright with a retail employer about her past and was hired. However, after three weeks, she was let go after her paperwork made it to the corporate office and they saw her record.

The Recovery Council referred the Pike County native to Goodwill in October for workforce development services where she was paired with Employment Specialist Lesley Lowery who Brittany described as wonderful.

“She came in wanting to work in her field but did not know if it was going to be possible,” Lesley said.

Brittany, 39, had obtained a human services degree prior to “acknowledging” her substance use disorder and always wanted to work in the mental health field. However, she was open to working anywhere and interviewed, with Lesley’s guidance, at the Zane Plaza Goodwill store in Chillicothe. Lesley said it seemed meant to be as Brittany and store manager Nancy Seymour connected right away. Within a few months, Brittany was promoted to a key holder.

“At Goodwill, she was able to be successful, so her confidence just grew through the whole process,” Lesley said.

The Goodwill job was just a first step on her journey, though. In April, Brittany started a new job as a residential assistant for Spectrum Outreach Services in Ironton.

“I really liked it at Goodwill. I loved those people. I cried when I left,” Brittany said. However, the new job has her on the path where she feels she belongs. “I didn’t ever really want to work in the drug and alcohol side of treatment, but once I went through treatment, I knew this is where I probably should be. It’s something that is going to help me stay clean.”

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