I came to the United States from Fiji with no job skills but was able to get a job doing physical labor at a warehouse. After suffering a debilitating back injury at that job 18 years ago, I was forced to leave. At the time, I was raising two daughters, and I was uncertain about what my future would look like.
My injury prevented me from doing any hard, physical work, and I wasn’t sure where I was going to work and earn a living.
I was referred to Goodwill Industries of Sacramento Valley and Northern Nevada by a counseling service and decided to register for computer classes. My computer skills improved a lot in a short period of time.
I decided to stay with Goodwill as a volunteer. I helped out in all different departments doing administrative work. I learned how to do a lot of different tasks and worked really hard to improve my skills.
After about six months, I started applying for jobs. I learned how to do accounts payable, and I really liked it. Goodwill recognized my hard work and dedication, and they hired me as an accounts payable clerk in February of 2001.
After nearly 17 years at Goodwill, I am happy and grateful that they gave me the opportunity to work. As a result of my injury, I had surgery in 2004 and was out for nine months. Goodwill kept my job open and welcomed me back with open arms. I feel great and happy, and I still learn something new every day. Seventeen years ago, I would never have guessed that I would be doing this type of work.
I am now the Lead Accounts Payable, and I have learned that anyone that is given a chance and puts forth an effort can move forward. There are so many opportunities at Goodwill, and I am so happy to come to work every day.