The official blog of Goodwill of Southern Nevada.

Success Story: A Former Live-in Caregiver Finds Herself on the Verge of Homelessness

After 8 years working as an in-home personal care assistant for an ailing senior, Carrie Kennedy was 60 years young, unemployed, and on the verge of homelessness. As she looked for work, she was told her age and lack of computer skills made her difficult to hire a story we hear far too often at Goodwill.

When companies hire an older worker, they get someone with a lifetime of knowledge, strong work ethic, and emotional maturity. Traits anyone would say they covet in a job seeker. This was certainly the case with Carrie Kennedy, who was referred to Goodwill by Nevada Job Connect.

Carrie’s previous job, as a live-in care giver, was both her job and her home. Unemployment meant homelessness. And, sadly, her job had come to an end. Thankfully, Goodwill’s Boulevard Mall Career Connections team, and Career Coach was ready to help.

Martha spent time getting to know Carrie learning about her past work experiences, strengths, passions, and desires. This is very important to ensure the person Martha is helping gets into a field they enjoy and will sustain employment within. Carrie enjoyed her time as a care-giver, and wanted to help people. So, off they went to build a winning resume.

With her resume complete, and eyes on helping others, Martha helped Carrie learn and navigate the world of online job boards and applications. This was all new to Carrie and is a challenge for many older workers.

Together over a series of days Martha and Carrie waded through online job listings identifying jobs that Carrie was both qualified for and interested in. One by one they applied and waited.

Not long after applying, Carrie got hits on a few good leads, but needed transportation help to get to her interviews. Thankfully, Martha could help her secure a gas card with help from the “Gift of a Job” grant.

Armed with confidence, skills, coaching from Martha and a gas card, Carrie nailed her interviews and landed a great job with New Vista. New Vista is a nonprofit organization who supports and empowers youth and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. They provide housing and programs to promote independence, confidence and self-advocacy. A perfect fit for Carrie.

With employment lined up, Carrie could find and secure an apartment, which she did right away. “Thank you for helping me apply for a lot of jobs and giving me words of hope and not to give up,” Carrie says to all Goodwill supporters. You are welcome Carrie, you are an inspiration to us all.

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