Story Behind the Stores: Dathan, Fairview

In addition to celebrating women’s history, March is also National Developmental Disabilities Awareness Month, a time to raise awareness for the inclusion of individuals with developmental disabilities.

At Goodwill, we pride ourselves on breaking barriers individuals with disabilities face when searching for self-sufficiency, and we are so proud of those individuals for connecting with their communities and making a difference through their work with us.

Dathan, who has cerebral palsy, moved into his own apartment in 2018. Soon after, he obtained employment at our Fairview store in Bowling Green and has been an amazing asset.

“Contrary to what some people believe, Goodwill is not just a store,” he said. “While this is a store, there’s more to it. … We have to operate like a regular business. But outside of the business realm, we do so much for people in the community. What you’re doing when you come here – even if you don’t realize it – you are helping other people.”

Dathan said he experienced some paranoia with living on his own for the first time, but his new Goodwill family was there to make him feel at home. He enjoys sharing his story with our customers to help drive our mission.

“I don’t want to go to a job where people think I’m easily replaceable,” he said. “… Now that I have this type of work environment, I can come home, and if something shady is going on at home, I can blow it off. Because tomorrow, I’m going to see all my friends.”

When you shop or donate at Goodwill, you are supporting individuals like Dathan and anyone else who may face a barrier to employment, which includes disadvantages, such as criminal background or history of abuse. At Goodwill, we are here to help any Kentucky job seeker in need.

Tap the image above to watch Dathan tell his full story!

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