Jenny Kakasuleff

    Jenny Kakasuleff

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    Overcoming Adversity and Emerging a Leader

    [fa icon="calendar'] Jun 24, 2024 1:45:00 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Employment, Success Story, Parents, Retail, Former Addiction, Mission Awareness, Mission Coaches

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    First Generation Graduate Plans for the Future

    [fa icon="calendar'] Jun 12, 2024 5:05:36 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Disability, Success Story, Indianapolis Metropolitan High School, Education, Mission Awareness, Goodwill Education

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    Removing the Stigma of Mental Health in the Workplace

    [fa icon="calendar'] May 29, 2024 1:06:24 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Employment, mental health, Mission Awareness, DEI

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    As part of our One Goodwill Strategic Plan, launched in 2022, Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana developed a number of initiatives aimed at improving the mental health support provided to the people we employ, educate and serve. One of these initiatives included hiring a Mental Health Strategist, an entirely new role created to support the organization as we sought to create a culture that removes the stigma surrounding mental health. 

    Learn more about Sarah Ash, Goodwill’s Mental Health Strategist, and how she envisions making an impact in her new role.

    Tell us about your background and experience in the mental health care field.

    I am a licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) and have worked in settings such as schools, child welfare, health care, emergency services and private practice therapy. Depending on the role, my support of individuals’ mental health may have looked like barrier removal (much like Goodwill’s mission and life coaches offer to Goodwill employees and graduates), legal advocacy or traditional talk therapy. Fortunately, this sort of varied experience gave me a tremendous amount of insight into the way we approach “care” for others and how much more creative and expansive our care can be!

    Describe your current role at Goodwill.

    Currently, I serve as Goodwill of Central and Southern Indiana’s Mental Health Strategist. This role was created in alignment with the Strategic Plan, which has a strategic objective dedicated to supporting the mental health of the individuals Goodwill employs, educates and serves. So far, this has looked like forming relationships across the organization to understand the unique challenges different areas face before partnering with them to develop ways to address those challenges. It has been exciting to think through the nuanced support we can implement in such a broad and diverse organization.

    What are some of the challenges employers are grappling with in terms of mental health in the workplace?

    The World Health Organization defines mental health as, “a state of mental well-being that enables people to cope with the stresses of life, realize their abilities, learn well and work well and contribute to their community.” Even if we can all more or less agree on what mental health is, what we each need as individuals to achieve it can be vastly different! For employers, this can be a really challenging reality to navigate because it means that each employee needs something unique. So attempting to build something that is both equitable and adaptable is very difficult, but important work. 

    How is Goodwill responding to these challenges?

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    Goodwill NFP Mom Rewrites Her Story

    [fa icon="calendar'] May 12, 2024 9:00:00 AM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Nurse-Family Partnership, Multi-gen impact, Goodwill Ignite

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    After becoming pregnant as a teenager and leaving high school, NaShae Price enrolled in Goodwill Nurse-Family Partnership® (NFP) for support. Pregnant with her first child, she was struggling to secure stable housing, transportation and a living wage job to help support her growing family. 

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    Empowering Families Through Goodwill Nurse-Family Partnership

    [fa icon="calendar'] May 3, 2024 9:23:27 AM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Nurse-Family Partnership, Parents, mental health, Mission Awareness, Multi-gen impact

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    “When I was first diagnosed with unspecified psychosis, I didn’t want to believe it,” Michaelae Cotton said. “Many times…those with this diagnosis are described as ‘crazy.’ I was embarrassed and felt ashamed. It wasn’t until I found safe spaces that I began to embark on a journey of victory. My nurse came into my life at the perfect time.”

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    New Goodwill Ad Campaign Highlights Community Impact

    [fa icon="calendar'] Apr 4, 2024 3:08:52 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Mission Awareness

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    Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana, a local, not-for-profit organization, recently launched a new ad campaign that includes broadcast and cable television, radio, digital and social media as well as billboards. These ads will illustrate how the proceeds generated from the sale of donated goods impacts communities across central and southern Indiana.  

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    The Excel Center Celebrates Winter Graduates

    [fa icon="calendar'] Mar 27, 2024 9:15:00 AM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in The Excel Center, Education, Mission Awareness, Multi-gen impact, Goodwill Education

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    The Excel Center®, Goodwill’s tuition-free high school for adults, recently celebrated 339 graduates during its winter ceremonies. Designed to empower individuals to overcome adversity and reach their potential, The Excel Center provides a unique opportunity for adult learners to earn an Indiana Core 40 high school diploma.

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    Achieving Independence at Goodwill

    [fa icon="calendar'] Mar 1, 2024 5:03:10 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Employment, Disability, Success Story, Retail, Southern Indiana, Mission Awareness, DEI

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    In 2021, Matthew Rose was diagnosed with Eales Disease, a rare, incurable disease that affects his eyesight by causing the blood vessels to swell shut, which can lead to permanent damage and loss of vision. He also suffered two strokes. 

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    Goodwill’s Nurse-Family Partnership Provides Hope to Young Moms

    [fa icon="calendar'] Feb 27, 2024 1:30:00 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Nurse-Family Partnership, Success Story, The Excel Center, Education, Mission Awareness, Multi-gen impact, Goodwill Education

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    When Natalie Preimesberger enrolled in Goodwill’s Nurse-Family Partnership® (NFP) in 2019, she had no job, no transportation, no stable housing, no high school diploma and many challenges to overcome. She grew up in a household where she experienced trauma, including exposure to substance abuse. 

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    Reflecting on 2023: A Year of Mission Growth

    [fa icon="calendar'] Jan 26, 2024 1:32:26 PM / by Jenny Kakasuleff posted in Community Partners, Employment, Nurse-Family Partnership, The Excel Center, Education, Foundation, Retail, mental health, Multi-gen impact, Strategic Plan, Goodwill Education, DEI

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    Last year was a big year for Goodwill of Central & Southern Indiana as we educated, employed and served more individuals than ever before. Since launching our new Strategic Plan two years ago, we’ve made significant progress on our objectives and goals.

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