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M’ville Goodwill offers inexpensive costumes, free career courses

Marysville Goodwill “costume coordinator” Enrique Garcia will sell you a vampire costume just like his, or help you mix and match clothing items to create a costume of your own. - KIRK BOXLEITNER The Marysville Globe
Marysville Goodwill “costume coordinator” Enrique Garcia will sell you a vampire costume just like his, or help you mix and match clothing items to create a costume of your own.
— image credit: KIRK BOXLEITNER The Marysville Globe

MARYSVILLE — As the current economic downturn hits both wallets and jobs, Seattle Goodwill hopes to help area consumers celebrate the holidays on a budget, and even gain valuable employment skills.

The Marysville Goodwill store is among those getting into the seasonal spirit. Not only did they join other Goodwill stores in staging a “Family Fun Day” Oct. 18, with Halloween-themed gifts, prizes and activities, but they’re also making “costume consultants” available every Saturday in October, from noon to 4 p.m., to advise shoppers how to create their own costumes.

“You can create unique Halloween costumes from any of our racks, not just the costume ones,” said David Sandler, Seattle Goodwill media relations and communications coordinator. “You can go out dressed like you’re heading to a ‘50s sock-hop or a ‘70s disco. It offers great options in tough economic times to save on both new and used costumes, for adults and kids alike, that would be much more expensive at regular retail prices.”

Craig Ferguson, Seattle Goodwill regional manager, invited area shoppers to return to their stores for winter holiday gifts, as well as for career-enhancing courses, headed up at the Marysville Goodwill store by Gusti Clark.

Clark is the Marysville Goodwill job and education specialist, and she touts Goodwill programs ranging from English as a second (or even third, fourth or fifth) language to computer classes. Skill-training in job-searching, resume-writing and interviewing are also on the menu, and once students have gone through these subjects, Goodwill case managers can help them find jobs, housing and even child care.

“We collaborate in job fairs and bring employers on site to see our workers,” Clark said. “We see a lot of homemakers, injured workers, people who are looking to update their skills, people who have been laid off, and immigrants.”

Ferguson hopes to improve the visibility of such Goodwill programs, since “many people aren’t even aware that we offer such services,” while Sandler emphasized that these programs are all offered free of charge, since they’re funded by the stores’ revenue.

“It’s a cycle of value,” Sandler said of the non-profit organization. “People in the community donate items, we sell them in our stores, we put the revenue from those stores back into the community, and community members donate to us again. We want to build strong communities, and economic self-sufficiency is very important.”

For more information, stop by the Marysville Goodwill store at 9315 State Ave., or call Clark at 360-657-4058.

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