Goodwill Industries of Middle Georgia and The Salvation Army Partner on Education

Monday, December 11th, 2023

As temperatures drop and Macon’s homeless and displaced seek shelter, The Salvation Army is ready to receive them with a warm bed and meal. However, a new partnership with Goodwill of Middle Georgia has put into motion a way to give these individuals a “hand up” in the world, providing education opportunities and valuable training for those in need, empowering them to build a more abundant life with careers in high-demand fields.

Goodwill Industries of Middle Georgia, Inc. (GIMG) and The Salvation Army (SA) are working together to provide high-quality educational instruction and training to those who seek shelter and assistance from SA. Helms Career Education, an arm of GIMG, offers programs and certifications in the fields of business and technology, health services, industrial and trades, retail, and hospitality. The two community-based non-profits are on a mission to lift individuals out of poverty and homelessness by breaking down barriers to employment and opening access to meaningful work.

“Our goal with this partnership is to connect with individuals in our communities who are reaching out for help to build a better life,” said GIMG President and CEO James K. Stiff. “The Salvation Army is a trusted and effective community service partner who meets immediate needs, but also understands the power of education and employment to stop the cycle of homelessness. Together, we want to end the need for charity and strengthen our communities by giving our neighbors the hand up they need to succeed.”

Most of the certification classes offered through Helms Career Education can be completed in six to eight weeks, putting individuals on a concentrated fast-track to specialized, high-demand jobs. Individuals who receive streamlined benefits, such as food stamps, Medicaid or TANF, may qualify to attend classes free of charge.

Presiding Salvation Army Corp Officer for Macon, Sergeant Austin Sturdivant, underscored the significance of the partnership, expressing, “We firmly believe in the transformative power of education and employment to break the cycle of homelessness. This collaboration with Goodwill of Middle Georgia enables us to offer not only immediate relief but also long-term solutions for individuals actively seeking to rebuild their lives.”

Learn more about the mission of each organization below or schedule interviews with leadership from GIMG and SA to dig deeper into the vision for this partnership and how non-profits are working together to serve those in need.