2020 Annual Report

In 2020, Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois served 18,724 people in many different ways, but with the same end goal – helping people create opportunities to enhance their lives.

Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois established the following goals–

  • Increase opportunity and efficiency in all our retail stores and mission service programs
  • Live our value of constant learning for all – our participants, our employees, and our community
  • Serve all of our communities with mission service programming, and
  • Position Goodwill Industries of Northern Illinois as a leader among thrift retail, mission services, and employers

Employment Services

Supported Employment Program

  • We helped 713 individuals obtain employment in our communities.
  • 100% of participants surveyed reported satisfied with program.

The Workforce Connection Career Centers

  • Goodwill is a proud partner of The Workforce Connection, where we serve individuals in training, education, and employment in Boone, Stephenson, and Winnebago counties.
  • Through this partnership, we served over 12,000 individuals with career services, training, credentials, and support which lead to meaningful employment.

Let’s Go To Work

  • Our supported work programs include programming in Freeport, Rockford, Sterling, Ottawa, Huntley, McHenry, Crystal Lake, and Beloit. We serve participants with disabilities and provide a supportive work environment, job coach, and continued training. Many of our participants transition to community employment with the help of an employment specialist and job coach.
  • In 2020, 72% of participants who transitioned to community employment kept their job for over 90 days.

Placement DRS VR

  • Our placement program operates in Freeport, Rockford, and Sterling, IL. We work with individuals with disabilities in conjunction with the Department of Rehabilitation Services. We assist individuals and prepare them for employment.
  • In 2020, we served 45 individuals through this program, providing employment supports and assisting them through the pandemic and its resulting effects.


  • Goodwill serves youth ages 16-24 through the Elevate Youth Program.
  • We served 368 youth with career services, training, credentials, case management and support.
  • Over 54% of participants received an industry recognized credential.
  • 62% of participants were employed 6 months after exit.

Young Adult LifeLaunch

  • The LifeLaunch Program serves individuals ages 18-24 who have been involved with the justice system.
  • In 2020, Goodwill served 48 individuals with intensive case management services, work experience, employment readiness development, and support services.
  • 97% of participants received an industry recognized credential.
  • The program has a 0% recidivism rate.

Education Services

GoodGRADS Adult Education Program 

  • In 2020, GoodGRADS successfully moved GED classes to online format to ensure customers could continue education and implemented a program to loan devices to customers who were in need of technology.
  • We assisted 46 individuals in obtaining their equivalency through GoodGRADS classes and the GED scholarship program.
  • We provided 435 GED scholarships for individuals in all communities we serve.

Financial Programs


Goodwill provided the IRS Certified Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program for the 11th year in 2020.

  • In 2020, the GoodTAXES Program prepared and filed tax returns for 2,338 customers.
  • We began working to transition the VITA tax program to new agencies in the community, including HomeStart and the NorthWest Community Center.

This program is generously supported through the United Way of the Rock River Valley and the Internal Revenue Service.

Community Collaborations

  • Through Goodwill’s partnership with the Northern IL Food Bank , we provided 1,061 food boxes to families in need in DeKalb and Machesney Park.

Round Up at the Register

Goodwill’s Round up at the Register program asks customers to “round up” their total at the registers at the store locations. The round up funds generated provide scholarships to individuals with disabilities at the community colleges in all of our local communities and support Goodwill’s Mission programming in our communities.

  • In 2020, Goodwill provided the following Community Colleges with scholarships: Blackhawk Technical College, Highland Community College, Illinois Valley Community College, Kishwaukee College, McHenry County College, Rock Valley College, and Sauk Valley College.

Corporate Citizenship

  • In 2020, Goodwill diverted over 19 million pounds from our local landfills by recycling cardboard, shoes, clothing, and metals, and computers.

Retail Customers

  • In 2020, Goodwill retail locations had over 1 million customers at our 11 store locations. Goodwill has 11 retail stores and one attended donation center.

Financial Information

2020 Financial Data