Two Exceptional and Compassionate Bank of America Student Leaders Intern at Goodwill of Orange County

Two local high school students at Goodwill with Nicole Suydam
Two local high school students at Goodwill with Nicole Suydam Earlier this summer, Goodwill of Orange County partnered with Bank of America to provide an inside look at the organization through an engaging internship for two local high school students through Bank of America’s Student Leaders program. The philanthropic program offers young people in Orange County an opportunity to build their workforce and leadership skills through a paid summer internship at a local nonprofit to help improve their communities. Matthew Jacquez, La Habra resident and graduate of La Habra High School and Miguel Quiroz, Santa Ana resident and graduate of Santa Ana Valley High School, were selected by Bank of America’s Student Leaders program to join the Goodwill of Orange County team for eight weeks this summer. Matthew and Miguel were chosen through a rigorous process of more than 100 applicants. Both Matthew and Miguel graduated top of their classes in high school and had previous experience with helping people with barriers or underprivileged youth, making them ideal internship candidates for Goodwill of Orange County. Through Student Leaders, Bank of America helps young people gain meaningful work experience, broaden their perspectives on how nonprofits serve community needs and advance their civic engagement. “I loved working at Goodwill of Orange County,” said Matthew Jacquez. “I grew professionally and personally as I experienced the intersection of business and public service first-hand through the day-to-day operations of the nonprofit.” Matthew and Miguel spent time in various departments within the Goodwill operation, including Human Services, Marketing and E-Commerce. They prepared for the annual audit, shadowed executives, designed wellness flyers for employees, and visited program participants at organizations and businesses across Orange County. The important tasks required critical thinking skills while also utilizing their passion and creativity for the nonprofit and business industries. “I learned so much from Goodwill of Orange County,” said Miguel Quiroz. “I was treated more like an employee than an intern. The respect I received from Goodwill of OC employees was as if I had worked there for 10 years.” Matthew spent a majority of his time with Human Services, observing the complexity and legal coordination involved in the department. He also learned about the on-boarding, auditing, training and employee relations at Goodwill of OC. Miguel was very interested in Goodwill of Orange County’s e-commerce platform, He gained insight on how the online entity operates and supports the larger Goodwill mission. “ opened my mind to see how you can make a profit and more importantly, continue to live the Goodwill mission of helping people facing barriers to employment find and keep jobs,” said Miguel. Both Matthew and Miguel agreed that meeting Nicole Suydam, president and CEO of Goodwill of Orange County, was a highlight of their experience. They discussed with her their feedback on the organization and learned about how the leadership team respects the opinions of its employees and program participants. Matthew is attending Stanford University and Miguel is headed to University of California, Berkeley this fall. We can’t thank Matthew and Miguel enough for their important contributions to Goodwill of Orange County this past summer. We are excited to see all that you both accomplish in the future!

Goodwill of OC Celebrated #NationalThriftStoreDay on August 17!

Clothes displayed for National Thrift Store Day
Clothes displayed for National Thrift Store Day Saturday, August 17 was National Thrift Store Day! Best day of the year? We think so! National Thrift Store Day is more than just snagging great deals. On this day, thrifters and bargain shoppers not only celebrate the values of up-cycling, re-using, smart shopping and thrifty fashion, but are given the opportunity to have an even greater impact on their local community. By shopping at Goodwill, every purchase supports a greater mission. In fact, 94 cents of every dollar spent at Goodwill of Orange County goes back into local programs and services designed to help people with disabilities or other barriers find and keep meaningful employment. Now that’s second-hand shopping you can feel extra GOOD about! I THRIFTED logo For this year’s National Thrift Store Day holiday celebration, we ran a special one-day promotion offering 50% off all rugs and boxed furniture as well as kids clothing. In addition to the awesome discounts, customers received a fun “I Thrifted” sticker for shopping at any of our stores. Shoppers wore this sticker with pride knowing their secondhand purchases helped reduce Orange County’s environmental impact and supported Goodwill of Orange County’s mission to help people facing a variety of barriers find and keep jobs, which provides purpose, pride and dignity. Interior picture of the store Mark your calendars for next year – same day, same place! #NationalThriftStoreDay | #IThrifted | #OCGoodwill | #CreateGoodwill

10,000 People Care for #OCGoodwill on We Care Wednesday!

People with clothes at the OC Fair shows
People with clothes at the OC Fair shows Earlier this month, OC Fair attendees had the opportunity to receive free admission and a free carnival ride ticket simply by donating five new or gently used clothing items to Goodwill of Orange County. During this year’s clothing drive more than 10,000 community members showed up and donated an amazing 31,538 pounds of clothing! People with clothes at the OC Fair shows Each and every donation supports #OCGoodwill‘s life-changing mission: helping people who are facing barriers find and keep jobs, which provides purpose, pride and dignity. The annual We Care Wednesday campaign at the OC Fair shows just how much Orange County cares about its community. Additional, donation days included 25 tons of food donated to benefit Second Harvest Food Bank and OC Food Bank, nearly 83,000 children’s books donated to benefit THINK Together, and more than 87,000 school supplies donated to benefit Share Our Selves. People with clothes at the OC Fair shows Thank you to everyone who participated to make a positive difference in our community, and supporting Goodwill’s mission by donating and joining us at the 2019 Orange County Fair. We will see you next summer! #OCFairCares #WeCareWednesday #OCGoodwill

#OCGoodwill Excels at Back to School

Kids' clothes and denim back pack

Just like that, the new school year is almost here! Ensure your little one starts the year off in style with affordable back to school outfits and accessories from Goodwill of Orange County. Check out the looks we discovered at some of our local #OCGoodwill stores below!

Kids' shirt, pant and red shoesKids' shirt and mini skirt


Back to school can mean getting readjusted to a regular morning routine. Keep things easy with basics and essentials. We love the pop of color that these fun red sneakers add to a simple outfit!

Kids' shirt, denim pants and blue shoesKids' shirt, pant and shoes


As the school year carries on, make layers your BFF! Stock up on jeans, long sleeves and hoodies to ensure your kiddo is comfortable in the chilly morning AND when the sun comes out at recess.

Kids' clothes and denim back packKids' backpacks Kids' backpacks


Out of all the back to school items you purchase, your kid’s backpack is probably the item that is put through the wringer the most! Choose a backpack that is full of personality and ready to take on all of the rough-and-tumble fun along the way.

Visit your local Goodwill of Orange County store to pick up affordable essentials for the entire school year!Share your photos for a chance to be featured on our Instagram or Facebook pages using the hashtags: #OCGoodwill #CreateGoodwill.

Sharing Goodwill with Nicole Suydam

President and CEO Nicole Suydam's photo
President and CEO Nicole Suydam's photo “I think a lot of times people go straight to judgement. You never know the circumstances that led to someone’s situation. Eliminate the judgement. People need a second chance.” – Nicole Suydam, Sharing Goodwill Episode One.  We are so excited to announce the launch of our new podcast, Sharing Goodwill with Nicole Suydam! Good news, inspiring news, uplifting news – that’s what Sharing Goodwill is all about. In each episode, Goodwill of Orange County President and CEO Nicole Suydam will chat with an individual who is doing good for their community, for their network or for their family. CEO Nicole Suydam with journalist and editor of COAST Magazine, Samantha Dunn Episode one of Sharing Goodwill is currently available on the platforms listed below! In this first episode, Nicole Suydam shares her story and journey into the world of nonprofits. She is interviewed by her friend, renowned journalist and editor of COAST Magazine Samantha Dunn. They dive into Nicole’s history and the path that brought her to Goodwill. Along the way, they discover many similarities in their journeys and discuss what they are most excited about for the future. Tune in and welcome to Sharing Goodwill! Listen now on Spreaker:…/episode-one-nicole-suydam-and-sa… Also available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts and CastBox. We know there are numerous good stories out there, and many happening in your community. If there is a guest you’d like to hear on the podcast, we’d love to hear from you – send us your recommendations on Instagram at @ocgoodwill or on Goodwill of Orange County’s Facebook page. #OCGoodwill #SharingGoodwill

Exclusive Outdoor Styling Event with Kate Keesee

Goodwill’s Anaheim Town Square store interior photo
Last month, Goodwill of Orange County teamed up with renowned Orange County DIY and home décor influencer and stylist Kate Keesee for an exclusive in-store event all about creating a perfect outdoor space without breaking the bank. Hosted at Goodwill’s Anaheim Town Square store, a VIP group of #OCGoodwill Instagram followers got the opportunity to learn first-hand tips and tricks to get their backyards summer ready – no matter the size or budget! Guests also went home with a swag bag filled with goodies from She Shed Living, The Potting Shed by Carlisle and Goodwill of Orange County! A lady showing home decor pieces Kate Keesee (@katekeeseeoc) is a fantastic do-it-yourself stylist and thrifter from Anaheim, CA with a long and loyal history working with and shopping at Goodwill of OC stores throughout Orange County. Now with more than 130K Instagram followers, she started her career as a first-generation blogger in 2009, later joining Instagram in 2015 to share her love of inspiring women to design beautiful homes without spending too much. Formerly known as Salvage Dior, she uses her unique and curated home décor designs, mostly purchased from local thrift stores and flea markets, to inspire her rapidly growing social media audience. Goodwill of Orange County stores are filled with lots of items that can be used for inside and outside home décor. If you’re not a seasoned thrifter, that’s okay! Kate showed us how to pick out winning pieces to transform your backyard. Kate taught guests how to create a cohesive and stylish outdoor space and inspired the audience to make use out of anything and everything they already have at home. For example, she turned a unique bath rug into a gorgeous throw pillow simply by using some fabric, glue and yarn. No sewing experience required? Thank goodness! Shopping at Goodwill of OC is similar to digging for buried treasure – you never know what you might find! Kate recommends thinking outside the box and brainstorming alternative purposes for items you find. She always browses the purse and handbag aisle for versatile finds. Instead of rocking these as accessories, she uses them throughout her home! Kate describes using a unique handbag as a planter, as a pillow case and even for storage. The event was filled with even more helpful advice as she explained her in-store set up and took specific questions from the audience. Thanks to Kate, guests in attendance and those who watched via social media had tons of fun and learned some useful and helpful home décor styling tips. Guests in attendance at an in-store event at Goodwill’s Anaheim Town Square What does your outside space look like? Were you inspired by any of Kate’s amazing tips? Visit your local Goodwill of Orange County store and put what you learned to the test. To watch our Facebook Live coverage of the in-store event, please visit: Be sure you’re following us on Instagram @ocgoodwill to be the first to know of future events! #OCGoodwill #CreateGoodwill

Sizzle This Summer With #OCGoodwill

Summer clothes, sleeveless top with trousers
The sun’s out and the living’s easy! With summer comes barbecues, weekend getaways and beach days filling the calendar, an updated summer wardrobe is a must! Check out #OCGoodwill outfit inspiration and style advice to keep you stylish and feeling cool all summer long. Neon fun blazer paired with a simple camisole and jeansA sleeveless red dress with neutral belt and strappy sandals SWEET SUMMER STYLE Get ready for your wardrobe to beam brighter than the sun – the neon trend is back and here to stay! We love the pops of neon in this fun blazer paired with a simple camisole and jeans – it’s the perfect look to wear to the office or even on a date night! Effortless and comfortable, sundresses are the perfect summer look! Accessorized with a neutral belt and strappy sandals, this high-low dress will leave you feeling put together with minimal effort required – yes, please! Classic pair of khaki shorts and a muted Hawaiian shirt Summer clothes, sleeveless top with trousers BEAT THE HEAT Stay sharp this summer with staple items such as neutral shorts and printed collared shirts. We love this classic pair of khaki shorts and a muted Hawaiian shirt – essentials for casual Fridays! Hitting the pool or beach? #OCGoodwill has colorful boardshorts galore! From printed to striped and everything in between, pair your trunks with a casual tank top or t-shirt before soaking up the sun. What does your summer wardrobe look like this year? Visit your local Goodwill of Orange County storeto pick up summertime items to stay cool in the SoCal heat! Show us your photos for a chance to be featured on our Instagramor Facebookusing the hashtags: #OCGoodwill #CreateGoodwill.  

2019 We Care Wednesday

OC Fair We Care Wednesday Invitation card with events listed
OC Fair We Care Wednesday Invitation card with events listed The Orange County Fair has begun! You can get into the fair for FREE this year simply by giving back to your local community! As part of #WeCareWednesday, the OC Fair is partnering with several Orange County nonprofit organizations, including Share our Shelves, Second Harvest Food Bank of Orange County, OC Food Bank, Think Together and Goodwill of Orange County, for themed donation days. Every Wednesday from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m., bring specific items for donation and receive admission to the fair plus one free carnival ride ticket. Enjoy fun-filled days of rides, games, and food – all while being charitable and contributing to great causes that make a difference right here in our communities! Check out the weekly themes below and how you can get in on the good. Share Our Selves logo July 17
  • Donate new school supplies valued at $5 or more to benefit Share Our Selves.
    • Items (pens, pencils, crayons, notebooks) must be new in sealed package. No coloring books/workbooks accepted.
Second Harvest Food Bank logoOC Food Bank logo July 24
  • Donate five cans of food to benefit Second Harvest Food Bank and OC Food Bank.
Think Together logo July 31
  • Donate three new or gently used children’s books to benefit THINK Together.
Goodwill of Orange County logo August 7
  • Donate five new or gently used clothing items to benefit Goodwill of Orange County.
Goodwill helps people who are facing barriers to find and keep jobs, which provides purpose, pride, and dignity. We believe the power of work changes lives.  Help make a positive difference in your community and support our mission by donating and joining us at the 2019 Orange County Fair. Give back to your community AND have a great day at the OC Fair? Sounds like a win! We hope to see you there! #OCFairCares #WeCareWednesday #OCGoodwill

Patriotic Pride With #OCGoodwill

Girls' sleeveless dress and shoes with stripes and stars
Oh, my stars & stripes – Fourth of July is almost here! Whether you’re going to a barbecue, picnic or pool party, show your patriotic pride with festive looks from Goodwill of Orange County. Check out what we discovered at some of our local stores! Girls' sleeveless dress and shoes with stripes and stars Festive graphic tees and trouser LITTLE FIRECRACKERS Looking for an outfit for your little one? OC Goodwill has fun star-spangled styles for all. Simple sundresses for the gals and festive graphic tees and boardshorts for the dudes – what could be more festive? Bright red romper and straw hat with navy blue detailing Denim shorts, sneakers, and a simple striped tee GO OUT WITH A BANG We love this bright red romper and straw hat with navy blue detailing for a sophisticated 4thlook. Want to keep it casual? Opt for denim shorts, your favorite sneakers and a simple striped tee! #OCGoodwill Style Tip: Not into all the red, white and blue? Pair solids or denim for an understated yet festive look. Solid red, denim, and white grey trousers Sleeveless striped tee and blue trouser Blue graphic tee with red trouser RED, WHITE AND DUDES TOO Fellas – we have you covered! Get your Independence Day on with fun boardshorts, graphic tees and colorful shades from OC Goodwill. What look will you be rocking this Fourth of July? Visit your local Goodwill of Orange County store to pick up affordable holiday outfits for the whole family. Show us your photos for a chance to be featured on our Instagram or Facebook using the hashtags: #OCGoodwill #CreateGoodwill. Have a fun and safe holiday!

Wishing You All a Worthy Memorial Day

Member of United States Military speaking into microphone on Memorial Day
Today is Memorial Day.  For many Americans, it’s simply a long weekend, a vacation time. Greetings of “Happy Memorial Day” can be heard at backyard barbecues and on the beach. This is all good, as we should celebrate the freedom to pursue happiness in our lives and thank those who serve our great United States. But what is the true meaning of Memorial Day? Just 75 years ago, the Normandy landings during World War II served as the catalyst to defeat Nazi Germany. World War II was the most widespread war in history with more than 100 million people serving in military units, including 16 million Americans. The Greatest Generation left behind a legacy of selfless service. As we continue to fight in the Global War on Terror, we see that Americans are not done giving the ultimate sacrifice for the good of others, and as long as we have a republic to defend, America will continue to give its sons and daughters in its defense. In 2003, I had the honor of serving with three of these great men in Baghdad. Sergeant First Class Marshall, Staff Sergeant Stever and NBC reporter David Bloom, died on April 7, 2003.  This was the first time I saw fellow service members die in combat, and that first Memorial Day after redeploying was when I really understood what Memorial Day was about – it’s not about those of us who made it back, but about those we lost, and the families they left behind. About 7% of the US population are veterans.  Less than 1% of the population currently serves.  Although recognizing our living veterans is honorable at all times, this day is about honoring our brothers- and sisters-in-arms, who made the ultimate sacrifice. So, is it really appropriate to say, “Happy Memorial Day?” I offer that we ought to be reminding each other to have a “Worthy Memorial Day.”  The veterans with whom I served and the ones I work with at the Goodwill of Orange County Tierney Center for Veteran Services, remind me daily that we have to “earn this.” That the freedom our brothers- and sisters-in-arms died defending can’t be taken for granted. Goodwill employs veterans and helps re-integrate them into civilian life. In return, the people who work alongside these extraordinary men and women are introduced to a level of compassion, determination and courage they would not otherwise encounter. I challenge each of us this Memorial Day, to not only thank the veterans in our community, but ask them about their battle buddies who didn’t make it back. Talk to and thank a Gold Star family member and ask them about the warrior who sacrificed for us all. We honor their sacrifices by talking about their deeds, their relationships and their lives. So, remember them on this day of remembrance. Ask about them. Listen to the stories from those they left behind. And may you have a meaningful and worthy Memorial Day. Denton Knapp is Brigadier General, California State Military Reserve and Director of Goodwill of Orange County’s Tierney Center for Veteran Services in Tustin, Calif.