The Golden Circle members of Colorado (NAPO) toured the Goodwill warehouse on April 22, 2011. Here are some interesting facts we learned.

The Goodwill Industries Mission:

Goodwill Industries enhances the quality and dignity of life for individuals, families, and communities by eliminating barriers to opportunity and helping people in need reach their fullest potential through the power of work.

  • Dell and Goodwill have partnered to take on Electronics recycling in a big way!!  Consumers, not corporations, can now drop off electronics from TV’s (not large CRT screens) to telephones.
  •  It is recommended that consumers ‘wipe’ or ‘scrub’ their hard drives before donating.
  • If an electronic item does not work you can still drop it off with a sticker on it “Does Not Work” to help out the sorters. Goodwill will recycle everything they cannot sell.
  • Goodwill plays a big roll in helping a great many people including the handicapped, the developmentally disabled and others involved in the law with career development, interviews and resume preparations…
  • In this 100,000 sq warehouse there is a large area donated to these people so they can help with projects such as assembling of the donation receipts, other project assembly for Science projects with Steve Spangler.
  • The inventory stays in the original store for 6 weeks then transferred to the Outlet Store.
  • There are Outlet retail stores takes all that doesn’t sell, the ‘leftovers’.  They then sell them to consumers ‘by the pound’.  WOW!
  • The process of marking down items in the stores happens with the use of color-coded tags.
  • The clothing items that are stained that come to the warehouse are sorted into ‘rag’ piles and are or sold to other companies or to 3rd World Relief agencies.
  • The shoes are also sorted into different categories mostly by a large number of immigrant male employees who are the major bread winners of their families and who have a hard time communicating in the job market.  Even some shoes that are ‘onsies’ are given to places where people use prosthetics.
  • Books are a low-profit item but many are now being sold on Amazon for a larger profit and funds are given back to the store of receipt. What doesn’t sell is recycled.
  • Many donations are dropped of in cardboard boxes. They now recycle these boxes.
  • Goodwill has a large storage area in the back of the warehouse of seasonal items they bring out during the proper season.  Smart organizing!
  • Only 10% of donations and retail store profits are used for administrative costs or operational costs.
  • 100% of donated dollars from events are allocated toward programs.
  • Alison Yeager leads the volunteer efforts regarding Youth Services; a very worthwhile project helping at-risk students from 26 different high schools in Denver.  Last year they helped 20,000 kids with over 1,000 volunteers.
  • In the summer they hold a ‘bridge service’ to work with kids who plan to be the first in their families to go to college.  They receive mentors and learn how to advocate for themselves.  And Goodwill works to track their progress and have found these kids to become successful and many who return to volunteer for Goodwill.  Cool!

For more information –

This is where I deliver most of my clients unwanted items. Great job Goodwill!