Goodwill names Muscatine Community Y Regional Employer of Year

Muscatine Community Y Custodial Manager Robin Leaf and Character Development Director Amy Hessel with the Goodwill of the Heartland Regional Employer of the Year award.

MUSCATINE, Iowa–For the past three years, the Muscatine Community Y has worked with Goodwill of the Heartland to help provide supportive job placements. The partnership has proved successful, with many Goodwill clients finding fulfilling work at the Muscatine Community Y. To recognize the Y for the outstanding opportunities they provide, Goodwill of the Heartland named them the 2019 South Region Employer of the year.

Muscatine Community Y Marketing and Development Director Nicole McCleary stated: “We’re thrilled and proud. I love that our YMCA has this partnership with Goodwill.”

Currently, the Muscatine Community Y has six employees from Goodwill of the Heartland. They work a wide variety of jobs, including as welcome desk attendants, Kids Club leaders, Youth Skills instructors, and members of the custodial and janitorial staff.

Over the years, the Muscatine Community Y has found great value in partnering with Goodwill of the Heartland to fill open positions and provide valuable on-the-job training to those who will benefit from it. “Just like all my staff, I like to see their growth as an employee,” said Character Development Director Amy Hessel.

“I like that we give real job experiences and they benefit because the have a purpose and responsibility,” observed Custodial Manager Robin Leaf.

McCleary added: “it’s always great to have extra smiles on the faces of staff at the YMCA, and this group does not disappoint. Their happiness is contagious and I’m thrilled to be their co-worker.”

Goodwill of the Heartland’s clients find their work experiences at the Y beneficial too. One current Goodwill client working for the Muscatine Community Y explained: “I like coming to work at the Y. The people I work with are really nice, and I love seeing the people and the kids every day. I like to see them flourish.”

In past years, Goodwill of the Heartland presented their awards, called the Edgars, at an in-person ceremony in spring or summer. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they chose to mail their awards to each recipient this fall. Even without the usual fanfare that comes with earning regional employer of the year, everyone at the Muscatine Community Y feels pleased by the recognition and their ongoing collaboration with Goodwill of the Heartland. “Our goal is to be here for our community and this is one more way that we can accomplish that goal and give something back to help others,” emphasized McCleary.