Story Behind the Stores: Regina’s “life was so dark,” but she found her second chance at Goodwill

Regina was a nurse for 25 years before she found herself addicted to pain relievers and lost her license. It was then she turned to street drugs.

“I used meth for two years straight,” she said. “My life was so dark. I lost my mom. I lost my home. I lost custody of my grandchildren. I was no help to anyone.”

Facing a handful of legal issues, Regina was sent to a treatment center in Hopkinsville, Kentucky and became sober on August 8, 2019. After one year of treatment, Regina decided to stay in Hopkinsville instead of returning home to Bowling Green. She knew she needed to find employment, but with her background, she didn’t know where to go for a second chance.

Regina’s friend, who was familiar with Goodwill’s services, encouraged her to apply for a position.

“I talked to the recruiter, Nick, and the store manager, Melissa, and they were willing to give me a second chance,” Regina said with tears in her eyes. “I found a lot of support at Goodwill.”

Securing employment was just the opening chapter of Regina’s redemption story.

She worked closely with Goodwill career coaches, Latoya and Margie, to enroll in the Goodwill Cars to Work program, and she was matched with a vehicle. She also learned valuable information about budgeting from our partners at Apprisen. She makes affordable monthly payments to help rebuild her credit. Once she pays off the loan in full, assuming all payments are made on time, her interest will be reimbursed.

She is also taking advantage of Goodwill’s tuition reimbursement program to study medical billing and coding at Purdue University Online. One day, she hopes to be a certified drug and alcohol counselor and open her own halfway home.

“There need to be better solutions for people in recovery to transition from treatment to society,” she explained. “I want to house six-to-eight women. I have big plans.”

If you or someone you know is in need of a second chance, just like Regina was, email contactus@goodwillky.org.