Roxanne Saldana is confident that great things are in store for her and her family thanks in part to the assistance she received from Goodwill of Central Arizona’s Career Centers.
Saldana said when she initially visited the Peoria Career Center in early 2009, she was at one of the lowest points of her young life.
“When I first came to the Goodwill Career Center, I was a struggling mom with small children at home, unemployed, and desperate,” said Saldana.
Furthermore, the 28-year-old just endured a divorce and had been laid off from her job as a cashier and food handler at Trevor Browne High School in Phoenix.
“Things were really hard,” stated Saldana. “The economy was bad and I was relying on help from my mom and the government in order to pay bills.”
At the Peoria Career Center, Saldana was able to receive coaching and advice that would help her become a more attractive candidate to local employers.
“I created a resume, used the computers to do job searches, and attended the weekly recruitments,” said Saldana. “The networking sessions were helpful because I could talk to others who were in my situation.”
Saldana utilized the Career Center’s services for more than four months before learning about a job opportunity at El Rancho Market in north central Phoenix which opened in the summer of 2009.
“I used the Career Center’s computer to apply on El Rancho Market’s Web page but was unable to find the new store location,” said Saldana. “Out of desperation, I took my resume and went looking for the store. I found their location and dropped off my resume. I didn’t receive a call so I went back again to talk to someone. Again, no response. After the third time going to the store, I told the store manager that I needed a job now!”
The manager eventually hired Saldana as a cashier at $7.50 per hour and she started off at 15 hours per week.
Saldana admits that the early days at El Rancho Market were not easy.
“That was a real struggle,” said Saldana. “It was so difficult to find a job that I decided no matter how tough it was that I would work very hard and prove myself to the manager in hope of getting more hours.”
After several months, she earned a promotion to head cashier and was working 40 hours a week.
“I continued to strive to be the best employee possible,” said Saldana.
Her hard work ethic paid off after working at El Rancho Market for six months. The Front End Manager resigned from the store and Saldana jumped at the opportunity to fill that position. In the summer of 2010, Saldana was promoted to store manager.
Saldana urges youth and adults in Arizona who are having a hard time finding a job to explore Goodwill’s job training and employment programs. In 2009, more than 25,000 individuals benefitted from Goodwill’s workforce development services.
“I have gone from unemployed and desperate to a successful working mom able to take care of my family,” Saldana stated. “My appreciation to Goodwill for providing the career centers and all the services needed to succeed in these tough times.”