Client Handbook


Welcome to Goodwill Industries of Northeast Indiana, Inc.

We hope the services you get from Goodwill will help you. This handbook will explain the services and programs of Goodwill Industries.


Goodwill Industries’ Mission:

Goodwill provides opportunities for people with disabilities and employment barriers to build independence through employment.


Goodwill believes that work plays an important role

in the ability of people to reach their life goals. Our services will teach you skills and help you find a job within our community. To get the most out of our services, you need be active in your program and keep in touch with your Goodwill staff person.


Goodwill Industries does not discriminate

against any person referred or receiving services with regard to race, creed, sex, religion, color, age, sexual orientation, disability, ethnic background, national origin, veteran or marital status, or any other class protected by law.


All Goodwill Employment Services staff

follow the Code of Ethics and Values of Goodwill Industries and are trained in the field they represent.


Goodwill Industries’ services are accredited by CARF

– The Rehabilitation Accreditation Commission for: Community Employment Services: Job Development, Job Site Training, Job Supports.


General Admission Conditions

You must meet these general admission conditions to enter Goodwill's services:

    • 1)  At least 16 years of age at the time of entry.
    • 2)  Able to care for your personal needs or have help in caring for your needs.
    • 3)  Behavior is under control and you are not a danger to yourself or others.
    • 4)  You chose to work toward agreed on goals in your Individual Program Plan.
    • 5)  Fee sponsorship or PASS/IRWE at the time of admission.
    • 6)  Records that state your disability and/or disadvantaging conditions should be given to us by your referral source.
    • 7)  Must have your own way to get to your meetings and/or job, by private means or by public transportation.
    • 8)  Your disabling condition must be stable enough so that you can work. A doctor’s release to work may be needed.
    • 9)  Able to benefit from using Goodwill services.
    • 10) Must be able to take part in your program without breaking the law, such as driving without a license, or using illegal drugs.


Client Rights

  1. 1)  As a Goodwill client you will be treated with dignity and respect, afforded freedom from abuse, financial or other exploitation, retaliation, humiliation or neglect. All services will be used to meet your specific needs. Goodwill does not allow you to be treated in a way that will physically or emotionally hurt you.
  2. 2)  Services will be given to you no matter your age, race, color, religion, creed, sex, marital status, sexual orientation, disability, national origin, ethnic background or veteran status, or any other class protected by law.
  3. 3)  All your program information will be kept in a confidential file. You (or your guardian) have the right to look at information created by Goodwill in your file during normal working hours. Goodwill respects your privacy; information (including personal health information) will not be given to anyone who is not part of your Program unless you (or your legal guardian, if applicable) write that it is okay. Please note: Other organizations or individuals possessing legal authority for access to particular file information through written client approval or court ordered subpoena may also access information.
  4. 4)  We want you to tell us what you think about the services offered by Goodwill. You can talk to your Employment Services staff person or put a note in the suggestion box in the front lobby. From time to time we will ask you to fill out surveys to let us know how we are doing.
  5. 5)  You may ask for help from an outside person (family member, friend, other agency personnel, Indiana Protection & Advocacy Services, legal representation, etc.) at any time during your services. Your Employment Services staff person will help you find an advocate if you want one. There may also be times when your Employment Services staff person suggests an advocate to help you with issues outside of Goodwill services and with investigations and resolutions of alleged infringement of your personal or legal rights.
  6. 6)  It is your choice to be in our services, and you have the right to say no to our services. You may ask for help in finding other programs if you feel that would be best for you. You can also be involved in other programs while working with Goodwill.
  7. 7)  If you are ever unhappy with your services or a staff member at Goodwill or if you feel your rights have been violated, you should talk to any staff person right away. How to file a complaint is explained in detail in the next section. If you need assistance on the way to do this, ask any Employment Services staff person.

View our Client Rights video at:



If you ever have a problem with your services at Goodwill, you should tell any staff person right away. That staff person may refer you to the Client Services Director to address your concerns or help you write a formal complaint.  The complaint should be filed within seventy-two (72) hours of the event in order to ensure prompt attention.

The Employment Services staff person will try to solve the problem and will give you a written answer within three (3) working days. If you are not happy with the solution, you can talk to the Client Services Director who must write a response within three (3) working days. If you are still unhappy, you may talk to the President within five (5) days, who will give a final decision in writing within five (5) days.

If you are unhappy with the decision of the President, contact your referring counselor.

You may bring an advocate or request help in getting an advocate at any time.

As a client you have a right:

  • To File a formal complaint
  • To confidentiality regarding the complaint
  • To be provided assistance during the process
  • To receive information in a manner that is understandable

Filing a complaint will not be held against you or prevent you from receiving services.


General Policies

  • 1)  The Goodwill offices are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
  • 2)  Goodwill offices are closed on the following holidays:
    • New Year's Day
    • Memorial Day
    • Fourth of July
    • Labor Day
    • Thanksgiving Day
    • Friday after Thanksgiving
    • Last Working Day before Christmas
    • Christmas Day
  • 3)  Smoking is not allowed inside any Goodwill facility.
  • 4)  Having a weapon on Goodwill property is not allowed and will result with you being immediately exited from services, except for licensed guns locked in a vehicle out of sight.
  • 5)  Having, using or selling of alcohol or illegal drugs in the workplace is not allowed and will result with you being immediately exited from services.
  • 6)  Goodwill will not dispense any medication to you.
  • 7)  Goodwill will not ask for any money, be your payee or handle any money for you.
  • 8)  Employment Services staff are not allowed to accept gifts from you.
  • 9)  Goodwill staff cannot accept friend requests from clients.  This includes social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and other related sites.  Becoming friends on these sites can compromise confidentially and blur the boundaries of our working relationship.
  • 10) WAITING LISTS: Should the need for a waiting list develop, the procedure for entry on the list and acceptance into services will be on a first-come, first-served basis.


Service Policies

1)  You will have an Employment Services staff person assigned to you while in services at Goodwill. Your staff person will help you meet your goals and arrange the services that you need.

2)  There are no costs to you for using our services. Your fees are paid by your referring agency. If you lose fee sponsorship after starting your program, we will try to keep you in services without interruption. This will depend on individual need and current budget limits.

3)  You will have a written individual program plan while you are at Goodwill. This plan will be based on your input and in an accessible format of your choice. You may have a family member, or any other person you want, involved in helping you with your plan.

4)  Your Employment Services staff person will work with you to plan your service goals for success. Your plan, and the progress on your goals, will be discussed with you on a regular basis. The plan may be changed at any time if all parties are in agreement.

5)  You may be placed in an interrupt status, during which all direct Goodwill services to you will stop. You, your referring counselor, or your Employment Service staff person can ask for you to be put on interrupt status. You can be placed on interrupt status for: not participating in services, not staying in contact with Goodwill, or a medical or mental condition which keeps you from participating. Your interrupt status is meant to last for a short time.

6)  If you are not working on your program goals or participating in services or you are unable to participate due to health reasons you may be exited from services. If your situation changes and you feel you could benefit from a Goodwill program you may reapply and be considered for re-entry into services.

7)  All critical incidents (violent, aggressive or other unsafe behaviors, alleged cases of abuse or neglect, weapons, etc.) will be reported to the Client Services Director. The incident will be looked into within forty-eight (48) hours.


Accessibility Policy

It is the policy of Goodwill Industries to have our workplace free of barriers to employment and to provide reasonable accommodations and supports to promote equal opportunity for participation by persons with disabilities.

The purpose of this policy is to identify and remove architectural, attitudinal, transportation, employment, communication, financial and environmental barriers.

Please tell your Employment Services Staff person if you need any accommodations.




  While a client of Goodwill you are expected to:
  • A)  Attend all scheduled meetings on time. You are more likely to reach your goals if you show up for your meetings.
  • B)  Call your Employment Services staff person and let them know if you will be late or need to reschedule your meeting.
  • C)  Work on tasks your Employment Services staff person asks you to do.
  • D)  Follow the rules of the program and/or program site.
  • E)  Show respect and consideration for the rights of others.
  • F)  Work on the goals that are written in your individual program plan.
  • G)  Tell your Employment Services staff person when you have problems with your job or outside of your job that may affect your work or Goodwill program.

  While a client you can expect Goodwill to:

  • A)  Help you set goals and ways to achieve these goals.
  • B)  Explain how you are doing on your goals.
  • C)  Provide support and encouragement.
  • D)  Treat you with dignity and respect.
  • E)  Respect your legal rights and privacy.
  • F)  Protect the confidentiality of whatever information you share.


Health and Safety

Goodwill has many safety plans in place to protect you. If there is an emergency your assigned Employment Services staff person will stay with you and help you in following all safety plans. You will need to cooperate.





Discovery provides an opportunity for you to explore your talents, interests, capabilities, ideal work environment and informed choice in order to identify an appropriate vocational goal. 

This may include:

       Job Shadows/Informational Interviews

       Situational Assessments

       Work Experiences

       Vocational Guidance and Counseling

       Vocational Testing

       Career Exploration 

Job Development and Placement

Job development and placement helps with job search activities that support you in searching for an appropriate job.

Job search assistance includes:
  • Resume Preparation
  • Job Seeking Skills Training
  • Interviewing
  • Networking
  • Job Readiness Training
  • Placement Assistance

Job Coaching / On the Job Supports

Job coaching helps you learn to perform job tasks to the employer’s expectations and learn the necessary skills to be a highly productive and valued member of the organizations workforce.

The parts of Job Coaching are:

       Learning the job duties

       Understanding the rules of work

       Employment counseling

       Natural support strategies

       Employment advocacy

Extended Services / Follow Along

Extended/follow along services help persons with severe disabilities maintain employment by providing on going support.


Goodwill Office Locations


Goodwill Corporate Office

1516 Magnavox Way

Fort Wayne, IN 46804

Phone: (260) 478-7617

Fax: (260) 436-3800


Huntington Goodwill Store Office

1966 North Jefferson Street

Huntington IN 46750

Phone: (260) 355-0919


Supporting Organizations

  • Indiana Family & Social Services Administration Vocational Rehabilitation Services
  • Northeast Indiana Foundations
  • Social Security Ticket to Work Program