The mission is to provide vocational and rehabilitation services and employment for persons with physical, developmental, mental, emotional or social challenges, which are obstacles to their employment in the open labour market.
To provide for the religious, educational and industrial welfare, of the handicapped, the needy and the dependent. By the inspiration of religion; by providing industrial education and the opportunity to work; by the encouragement of thrift; by the promotion of industrial evangelism, this organization shall seek to prevent pauperism, to relieve the temporary distresses of the unfortunate, and to train the unemployed and handicapped in self-supporting occupations.
Founded in Winnipeg in 1931 to help victims of the Great Depression, the goal was to provide struggling, handicapped and unemployed Manitobans with self-respect through the dignity of a job. That simple corporate statement of mission is still faithfully followed today.
It has been a remarkable success story. For nearly a century, Canadian Goodwill has given jobs to men and women, in the process giving them confidence and teaching them job skills. It has paid more than $12 million in wages.
Today Canadian Goodwill Ind., Corp. is run by a volunteer board of directors, who share in this same ideology. The company now employees over 60 men and women at its six outlets. Canadian Goodwill operates three trucks for picking up donated goods from homes and offices.
The main store, “The Goodwill Store,” a five story building at 70 Princess Street in the Exchange District, houses the company’s corporate office, a clothing and furniture outlet, as well as our donation sorting department and our workshop warehouse.
Remarkably, Canadian Goodwill has never received financial help from the City, the Province or the Federal Government.
Over the years we have given thousands of dollars to worthy causes. All of our revenue remains in Manitoba helping Manitobans! None of the profits leave the province and our administration overhead is kept low.
None of this would be possible without the great generosity of the householders and firms who donate their unwanted gently used goods to the Canadian Goodwill. They provide the lifeblood for Canadian Goodwill.
We offer free pickup of unwanted articles, and our three trucks pick up in the city Monday-Thursday according to the area in which you live. You may also drop off at any of our store locations during business hours.
What is equally vital to our success is the patronage of consumers who come to our stores in search of things they need or want. We set our prices at affordable levels to reflect the fact that everything we offer is second hand. We also offer discounts to seniors and post-secondary students.
The furniture, clothing, appliances and other goods on sale at Canadian Goodwill may be used, but great care and work is put into refurbishing, cleaning and repairing them. It is this painstaking work, done under supervision, which develops skills and abilities among the Canadian Goodwill Staff. Many of these employees face social, economic, emotional, and/or physical disabilities which make it challenging for these individuals to find employment.
Metal from un-repairable items is set aside and sold as scrap.
Canadian Goodwill has truly been in the recycling business for over 90 Years.
All of our store locations house a vast variety of used furniture, toys, sporting goods, computer equipment, clothing, dishes, bedding, drapes, books, TV’s, radios stereos, small and large appliances, and collectibles. Before anything goes on display, however, it must pass through workers in various parts of our organization, and then priced according to its condition.
The effort to recycle goods, retrain people, retain jobs, and help to rebuild the communities continues. It adds up to a heartwarming success story of an enterprise which filled a need and in the process, carved a special niche for itself in the business and social fabric of Manitoba.
The business had an unlikely beginning. In 1931, as unemployment soared with the onset of the Depression, Rev. J. Richmond Craig was approached by a jobless young man. He told the Scottish born Minister of the old downtown Grace United Church that he, his wife and their two young children had not eaten in two days. He was at his wit’s end. Could anything be done?
Rev. J. Richmond Craig, although a deeply compassionate man, held a strong conviction that work, not charity, was the cure to unemployment. He gave the man $40.00 and told him to go home, feed his family and return that afternoon. There was work to be done. The $40.00 wasn’t a handout, it was pay in advance.
Stuck with leftovers from the Church’s rummage sale, the enterprising young minister rented a nearby site. When the unemployed man returned, Rev. J. Richmond Craig told him to cart the goods to the newly rented outlet, put them on display and price them for selling. That was the genesis of Goodwill.
Donations of second-hand and unneeded goods started to pour into the store. It wasn’t long before a larger outlet was needed, more unemployed people were hired, and a truck for pickups was purchased.
The minister has a penchant for catchy slogans, which motivated Winnipeggers to donate, “waste into wages, junk into jobs, and discards into time cards.“
From 1956 to March 1995 the minister’s son Alan Craig ran Canadian Goodwill as President and General Manager. He strictly adhered to his father’s precept that job openings should go to people whom many businesses and social agencies would consider unemployable.