Goodwill Program Empowers Associate to Expand Her Horizons

When Helen “Page” Powell joined Goodwill six years ago, she was looking for a “good, healthy change” which she found in a collaborative, supportive environment. As part of a group supported employment program for individuals with disabilities, Powell works as a textile hanger at Goodwill’s Lynnhaven retail store in Virginia Beach. She has come a long way from a once occasional Goodwill shopper, looking for cute teacups and water bottles, to a job in which she thrives today.

Powell is funny and sociable, and she enjoys making her coworkers laugh. She said that she is focused on her personal development and improving her performance at work.

Powell has worked with Tasha Greene, a Goodwill employment skills trainer, throughout her entire Goodwill career. The focused support Greene has helped Powell to excel in her role, as well as learn how to navigate complex inter-personal relationships in the workplace.

“Page continues to flourish and has limitless capacity for greatness,” said Greene. “She has been able to exhibit versatility in the manipulation of tasks throughout the store and continues to make progress with her ability to effectively maintain positive relationships.  It is one of my greatest pleasures to see someone be able to live their best life and I get to witness this on a regular basis with Page,” added Greene.

Powell’s life goal (besides becoming famous one day) is to “expand her horizons for advocating.”  She is passionate about disability employment issues, joining local advocacy group “Our Voices” and speaking to the Goodwill of Central and Coastal Virginia Board of Directors on her experiences and challenges.   Previously, she has spoken at the “Polar Plunge,” an annual fund-raising event in Hampton Roads that she partakes in almost every year, as well as the Special Olympics, in which she is a long-time competitor. After speaking at several advocacy group events, Page wants people to know that “I do have a purpose; my purpose is to help other people with different kinds of disabilities, to help them to find a job.”

Her favorite Goodwill core values are respect and integrity, and she strives to model them in her behavior. Page is empowered by her employment and strongly believes in Goodwill’s mission of helping people help themselves through the power of work.