Goodwill Industries® of Greater New York and Northern New Jersey, Inc. (Goodwill NYNJ) held today a grand opening with a ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the official opening of its first Personalized Recovery Oriented Services (PROS) program in Manhattan.
Goodwill’s Harlem PROS is located at 1767 Park Ave., 5th fl.; NY, NY 10035. Goodwill NYNJ operates two other PROS in Astoria, Queens, and Brooklyn, NY.
Goodwill NYNJ has provided behavioral health services for over thirty years to help New Yorkers with mental illness stay healthy, on their jobs, and out of hospitals due to psychiatric crises.
PROS is a recovery and rehabilitation program for adults (18+ year-olds) with serious mental illness that provides assistance with the mental health and substance use issues that prevent participants from achieving their life goals.
The program helps participants gain the necessary skills to live independently, develop the support necessary to integrate into their community, offer mental health treatment, management of their wellness, and support to get and keep a job.
In 2022, Goodwill NYNJ provided behavioral health services to help over 1,500 NYC residents with mental illness manage their recovery.
New Yorkers like Stephanie S., a single Hispanic Harlem resident in her thirties, had struggled with mental health for years and had been hospitalized multiple times due to psychiatric crises. She had to quit her long-term job after injuring her knee and decided to join Goodwill’s Harlem PROS in October 2022.
At first, she struggled to attend PROS due to anxiety, paranoia, sadness, and confusion. Thanks to therapeutic counseling, she began attending and participating in groups that provided her with coping, basic living, and problem-solving skills training. She also attended benefits and financial management, and relapse prevention planning. These services have helped her “come out of her shell” to socialize without anxiety, become more confident, and creative, and have a better understanding of her mental illness. Today, Stephanie maintains a great relationship with her family, building social relationships, managing her finances, and making money selling health products. “Before coming to Goodwill, I didn’t want to talk. I was very shy and felt nervous and anxious,” said Stephanie. ”I’ve learned how to manage mental health symptoms better at PROS groups. My mindset is changing.”
According to New York State’s Department of Health, “more than one in five New Yorkers has symptoms of a mental disorder. In addition, in any given year, 1 in 10 adults and children experience mental health challenges serious enough to affect functioning in work, family, and school life.”
“The stigma of mental illness and the lack of peer support and community can discourage people from participating in treatment,” said Katy Gaul-Stigge, Goodwill NYNJ President and CEO. “Systemic mental health issues afflict many of our neighbors, especially people of color. That is why we are excited to expand these needed services in this wonderful, light, and welcoming space today.”
Goodwill NYNJ is a leading employment nonprofit organization that in 2022 provided training, job connections, on-the-job coaching, and retention services for more than 9,000 people who are under or unemployed, approximately half of them people with disabilities. In the past year, Goodwill NYNJ placed 1,042 people in new jobs, a 27% increase from the previous year, including 565 individuals with disabilities, outside its stores with employers such as hospitals and health care centers, tech and accounting firms, in the warehousing and manufacturing sectors, and NYC agencies.
Goodwill Industries of Greater New York and Northern New Jersey, Inc. (Goodwill NYNJ) is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that operates retail stores throughout the region powered by donations of clothing and household items. Goodwill NYNJ translates those donations into workforce development services for people with disabilities and the unemployed, and job training leading to employment. Goodwill NYNJ’s services build better lives for thousands of New York City Metropolitan Area residents and their families. For more than 108 years, the agency’s mission has been to empower individuals with disabilities and other barriers to employment to gain independence through the power of work. Learn more about Goodwill NYNJ at www.goodwillnynj.org
Photo credit: 1-2) Goodwill Ribbon Cutting.
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