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Julie Gilkay

FISC informs student loan borrowers about new repayment option

Menasha — Beginning this month, student loan borrowers have a new repayment option to consider, and it could lead to significant relief for an estimated 5 million borrowers.

The Financial Information & Service Center, a nonprofit program of Goodwill NCW, is taking steps to share important information about this new program and how it will impact those who are seeking more affordable ways to pay their debt. FISC is a consumer credit counseling agency that is licensed by the state of Wisconsin and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling.

“While this new program presents exciting opportunities for student loan borrowers, it may not be the best or only option for people to consider,” says Pete Spaeth, NFCC-certified student loan counselor. “Selecting the most appropriate repayment plan requires a clear understanding of the benefits and how those are applicable to a person’s unique circumstances.”

The new program, Revised Pay As You Earn (REPAYE), allows borrowers to cap their monthly payments at 10% of their discretionary income regardless of when they borrowed or how much they owe. Another benefit is that after 20 years of making payments (25 years for graduate students), any outstanding loan balance will be forgiven under the program. It’s similar to the current Pay As You Earn (PAYE) option, but REPAYE is open to all students who borrowed directly from the federal government.

What this means

The monthly reduction could make a substantial difference for those having trouble making ends meet. Discretionary income for this purpose is calculated as the difference between adjusted gross income (taken from the tax return) and 150% of the current poverty line. For this year, that payment would be 10% of what is earned over $17,655 divided by 12 months. For instance, a person earning $30,000 a year would see payments capped at a level of about $102.88 a month.

Why now?

The new REPAYE option addresses an overwhelming need to reduce student borrowers’ financial stress. That stress is blamed for the delay in home purchases and other life-stage commitments. But of even greater concern is the upward trend in student loan defaults. Those defaults can have a long-lasting impact on a borrower’s financial well-being. A record of late or missed loan payments impacts a borrower’s credit history by making any new loan requests — for cars or homes — more expensive or just extremely difficult to qualify for.

There is a downside

The downside to this type of repayment option is that, for some borrowers, the monthly payment may not cover both interest and principal payments, which means the balance due could keep growing. That makes it harder to obtain other personal credit — from credit cards to mortgages — because the borrower’s credit capacity is exhausted. Another risk is that the lower monthly payment under REPAYE will lead the borrower to pay substantially more over the life of the loan when compared to a Standard Repayment plan.

The loan forgiveness aspect of the program also can trigger a one-time spike in taxes due. When a balance is forgiven, the amount may be taxed as ordinary income, which can cause an unwelcome boost to a future tax bill. The tax aspect is something the Obama administration is currently working on. A proposal is being prepared to make forgiven student loan balances tax free. It will require congressional approval before it can take effect.

With the addition of REPAYE to the federal loan repayment lineup, borrowers now have eight income-based programs to choose from. Because borrowers may be eligible for more than one program combined with the interaction between student loans and other forms of debt, they are encouraged to reach out to an NFCC-certified student loan counselor with FISC to determine which one would be the most beneficial for their individual circumstances. To get started, consumers can visit www.fisc-cccs.org or call the FISC Menasha office at 920-886-1000.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 28 programs and services. The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers seven Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Neighborhood Partners joins Goodwill NCW as permanent program

MENASHA — Neighborhood Partners has become a permanent program of Goodwill NCW, marking Goodwill’s 28th program in its 35-county region.

It had been a temporary Goodwill program since July 1.

Neighborhood Partners is a grassroots, asset-based approach to transforming communities at the neighborhood scale, where all people can work together to produce the quality of life they want. Neighborhood Partners builds the capacity and leadership of neighbors to transform the place where they live and gathers nonprofit, corporate and government resources to support the work.

“We’re excited to add this work to our human-services mission,” said Bob Pedersen, Goodwill NCW’s president and chief executive officer. “As part of our mission of ‘Elevating People, Transforming Communities,’ it’s important for us to work on the neighborhood level and hope that the impact spreads ever wider.”

The program is working in three Fox Valley neighborhoods:

  • Historic Central Neighborhood, north of downtown Appleton: reclaimed Arbutus Park, launched St. Therese Community Garden, boosted home food gardening, trained youth as lawn care entrepreneurs, created public art, renovated elementary school playground, connected students with neighbors for shared learning
  • Jefferson Park Neighborhood of Menasha, east of Racine Street and south of 3rd Street/Plank Road: completed first neighborhood vision/planning process involving more than 200 neighbors, formed action teams.
  • Heart of Menasha Neighborhood, west of Racine Street from downtown north to 9th Street: core planning group just forming.

Neighborhood Partners is based at the Goodwill Community Campus at 1800 Appleton Road, Menasha.

Julie Filapek, Neighborhood Partners program leader, can be contacted at jfilapek@goodwillncw.org or 920-217-8744.

Neighborhood Partners is a former program of Sustainable Fox Valley, which is now TrustWorks.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 28 programs and services. The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation for Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Volunteers sought for tax-preparation program; information sessions scheduled through Nov. 10

A choice of three information sessions for persons interested in volunteering for the VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) program will be offered in the next several weeks.

All sessions will be at the Goodwill NCW Community Campus, 1800 Appleton Road, Menasha. The sessions are:

  • Thursday, Oct. 29, 5:30-7:30 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 31, 10 a.m.-noon.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 10, 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Volunteers are asked to serve at least 20 hours between Jan. 28 and April 18, and will receive training. VITA is seeking greeters, basic and advanced tax preparers, screeners, and quality reviewers.

All volunteers must complete a background check before volunteering.

VITA (www.filetaxes4free.org) is one of 27 programs supported by Goodwill NCW with revenue generated from community donations and store purchases.

VITA, a program of the IRS, is designed to help low and moderate-income taxpayers complete their annual tax returns at no cost. VITA services are available nationwide; each year, millions of low-to-moderate income tax filers are provided free tax assistance, preparation and electronic filing through VITA programs.

In the 2015 tax season, Goodwill’s VITA program trained more than 70 volunteers (students, professionals and community members) who prepared over 2,000 federal tax returns for low-to-moderate income, disabled or non-English speaking residents of the Fox Valley. VITA volunteers helped those tax filers save thousands of dollars in commercial tax preparation fees and claim valuable refundable tax credits like the Earned Income Credit, Child Tax Credit and the Wisconsin Homestead Credit.

To register or for more information:

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and more than 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

From Sept. 16 to Oct. 3, donate to Goodwill NCW at Bon-Ton Stores and Goodwill donation sites, receive discounts

Menasha — Consumers who want to save on fall fashion — and support a good cause — know that Bon-Ton Stores are the place to shop this season. People who donate clothing, shoes, accessories or other household textiles for Goodwill at any of the Bon-Ton Stores’ 270 locations will receive discount coupons to purchase the newest fall fashions for the entire family as well as home merchandise.

The semi-annual Bon-Ton Goodwill Sale will take place from Sept. 16 ­to Oct. 3, 2015.

Donors will receive coupons of up to 25 percent off merchandise at their local Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s or Younkers stores. The special Goodwill donor discount applies to women’s, men’s and children’s apparel; shoes; handbags; home items; and luggage, with 15 percent off on cosmetics and fragrances. Bon-Ton Stores will donate collected items to Goodwill Industries of North Central Wisconsin (NCW), which will sell them in one of its 26 stores.

Coupons are also available when donating at all 26 Goodwill NCW Retail Stores and Training Centers, its eight Donation Express facilities, the Outlet Store in Appleton, and Sunshine House in Sturgeon Bay.

Revenues from the sale of those items help fund job training and services in the communities where they are collected, and they help people find jobs and build their careers. In addition, Goodwill uses the funds to provide support services to help people strengthen their families, including free tax preparation, financial education, food sustainability, Miracle League baseball, Birth-to-3 family support and more.

“When you take part in the Bon-Ton Goodwill Sale, you can be certain your donations provide services that help thousands of people who face challenges to finding employment, as well as support for others who face barriers and struggles in other areas,” said Bob Pedersen, president and CEO of Goodwill NCW. “Bon-Ton shoppers get great deals on new fall clothing and other items, and Goodwill is better able to support career development programs that help individuals and families.”

Within Goodwill NCW’s service area, Bon-Ton operates Herberger’s in La Crosse (Valley View Mall) and Rice Lake (Cedar Mall), and Younkers in Grand Chute (Fox River Mall), Ashwaubenon (Bay Park Square), Eau Claire (Oakwood Mall), Manitowoc (Edgewater Plaza), Marshfield (Marshfield Mall), Plover (1780 Plover Road), Sturgeon Bay (58 N. 3rd Avenue), and Wausau (Wausau Mall).

Outside Goodwill NCW’s service area, Bon-Ton operates Boston Store, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers facilities in various cities. For more information, go to www.bonton.com/content/find-a-store/content1.html.

This marks the 21st year of the partnership between Goodwill and Bon-Ton. Customers may register at www.MillionActsofGoodwill.com for a chance to win a $25 gift card. One lucky winner will receive a $500 shopping spree. See official rules online for details.

“The Goodwill Sale is Bon-Ton’s signature cause-marketing event,” said Kathryn Bufano, president and chief executive officer of The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. “Our customers look forward to this sale because they can get involved by donating to help others and also receive discounts on new fall merchandise.”

To learn more about the Bon-Ton Goodwill Sale, visit www.goodwill.org/bonton.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers seven Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

About The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc.: The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., with headquarters in York, Pa., and Milwaukee, operates 270 stores, which includes nine furniture galleries and four clearance centers, in 26 states in the Northeast, Midwest and upper Great Plains under Bon-Ton, Bergner’s, Boston Store, Carson’s, Elder-Beerman, Herberger’s and Younkers nameplates. The stores offer national and private brand fashion apparel and accessories for women, men and children, as well as cosmetics and home furnishings. The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. is an active and positive participant in the communities it serves. For locations and information, visit www.bonton.com. Follow Bon-Ton on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and the fashion, beauty and lifestyle blog, #LoveStyle.

BON-TON CONTACT: Christine Hojnacki The Bon-Ton Stores, Inc. (262) 378-9354 ‎christine.hojnacki@bonton.com

Goodwill NCW retail stores: Halloween headquarters with a heart

There’s no need to be scared of your Halloween costume options at any of the 26 Goodwill NCW retail stores across north central Wisconsin.

Starting Tuesday, Sept. 8, we’ll have a (g)host of costumes, makeup, wigs, accessories and costume options for anyone who wants to leave a trail of frightened friends and family in their wake.

And in October, we’ll give you hands-on help in creating the best costume your money can buy!

Here’s how we’ll help to create havoc or hilarity — with a healthy helping of hope — in your Halloween:

  • A costume idea book will be available in every Goodwill NCW retail store, offering dozens of suggestions for a distinctive look.
  • A wide selection of makeup to transform your usually cheery look into something far more ghoulish.
  • Every store has hundreds of apparel and ready-to-make costume items. If the costume is for neighborhood trick-or-treating or a night out on the town, Goodwill NCW has what you’ll need for a great memory in the making.
  • Shoes, hats, accessories, gowns, beards, masks, wigs … all at bargain prices, and all for a great cause.
  • The princesses in your world will want to see our tutu collection. We have a LOT!
  • Want to be a cheerleader for the local team? We can make that look happen in green and gold, and other color combos.
  • Goodwill team members will dress up to make the shopping experience fun. Steal their ideas!
  • We have a huge array of Halloween décor for in-home and outdoors use, new and donated.
  • Throwing a Halloween party? We have party accessories for the perfect gathering.
  • Beginning Oct. 9, costume consultants will be available in all Goodwill NCW stores to help you create a one-of-a-kind costume.  Here’s when you’ll get a great hand-up in pulling together your Halloween costume:
    • Friday: 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
    • Saturday: 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.
    • Sunday: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
    • Special weekday additional hours:
      • Monday-Thursday, Oct. 26-29: 4 p.m. to 9 p.m.
      • Friday, Oct. 30: 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.
      • Saturday, Oct. 31: 10 a.m.-9 p.m.
  • For the second consecutive year, we’re getting help from radio personalities across our 35-county footprint. They’ll be dressing in full costume and competing on social media as best-dressed! More details when we get closer to their online contests.

Goodwill NCW stores come to play for Halloween, no doubt.

But shoppers make a difference in ways other than their looks. Every purchase supports Goodwill NCW’s 27 programs and services, which in 2014, touched the lives of more than 68,600 people across Wisconsin.

From Miracle League baseball (giving kids from ages 4-19 the chance to play the sport on a special rubberized field, with volunteer “buddies) to FISC (financial counseling), from Payment Partner (payee services and money management) to Goodwill Grows (community gardening and food sustainability programming), as well as job skills and job placement programs, shopping at Goodwill makes a hometown difference.

Goodwill NCW’s mission — “Elevating People, Transforming Communities” — is lived 365 days each year, and supported by retail revenue and generous donations, many of which will be part of Halloween costumes.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 touched the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services, plus many collaborations and sponsorships The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers from Manitowoc to Plover to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites throughout the state, plus 45 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Goodwill NCW to open Donation Express location in Eau Claire; organization’s first in western Wisconsin

Goodwill NCW (North Central Wisconsin) announced that it will open a Donation Express location in Eau Claire — the organization’s first in western Wisconsin — on Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015.

Goodwill NCW’s eighth Donation Express will be in the Westridge Center, at 2625 N. Clairemont Ave., two doors away from Mega Foods. The first 40 donors at the Donation Express will receive a coupon for a free Papa John’s pizza.

A grand opening ribbon-cutting ceremony is planned for 9 a.m. on opening day.

Each Donation Express is staffed from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily by Goodwill team members, who help donors with their contributions of used clothing and household items. The resale of those contributions provides financial support for the 27 programs and services in Goodwill NCW’s 35-county footprint.

Goodwill NCW’s Donation Express sites are intended to ease the donation process, with staffing and closer access in the communities served by the organization. The strategy has been successful, and plans are under way to create more Donation Express facilities across the service area over the next three years.

“Eau Claire is an important market for Goodwill NCW, and we’re excited to offer our Chippewa Valley donors a great and easy way to make a difference for themselves and the community,” said Dan Flannery, vice president of community relations.

“Our Donation Express sites make giving easy. Our team members will help you carry donations from your car, and get them into our merchandise pipeline, where we put the material to good work in support of our programs and services.”

In 2014, Goodwill NCW accepted almost 44.2 million pounds of donations across the state, a new organizational record. Goodwill NCW has seen a steady increase in donations since adopting a model that includes Donation Express sites and additional donation bins in high-traffic areas in the Fox Valley.

The not-for-profit organization plans to expand its Donation Express locations across the state, with Eau Claire leading the way on the western half of Wisconsin.

“We’re also seeking to expand our human-services programs and services in central, northern and western Wisconsin,” Flannery said. “We are excited by the possibility of serving even more people in the near future.”

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 26 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers seven Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Leadership teams named for Stevens Point, Plover stores

Goodwill NCW (North Central Wisconsin) has named Tom Baldischwiler the first Store Team Leader of the organization’s new Plover Retail Store and Training Center, scheduled to open Thursday, Aug. 13.

Goodwill NCW’s Plover store, at 1017 Commons Circle in the Crossroads Commons retail area, will be the organization’s 26th such location across its 35-county service area, and the second in Portage County. The Stevens Point store, at 5373 U.S. 10 East, will remain open.

Baldischwiler has considerable experience in that role in other Goodwill NCW retail/training locations. He’s been the Stevens Point Store Team Leader since June 2007, and previously handled that job in Waupaca (2005), Weston (2004) and Rothschild (2003).

Before Baldischwiler joined Goodwill NCW in 2003 as Associate Team Leader of the Wisconsin Rapids store, he worked for Fleming Company as a manager/buyer, U.S. Office Products as an account executive, Staples Inc., as a store manager and Shopko as a manager. He’s a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

The Plover leadership team includes Support Team Leader Brittany Keenlance, and five Area Team Leaders: Thomas Bouton, Sarah Morgan, Austin Rude, Scott Schobert and Cassandra Sorensen.

Aaron Craig will replace Baldischwiler as Store Team Leader in Stevens Point. Craig comes to Goodwill after serving in management positions for Walmart in Plover (2009-2015) and Wisconsin Rapids (2004-2009).

Area Team Leaders in the Stevens Point store will be Brian Pond, Bradley Meyer, Gail Mockler and Pamela Rake.

The donation door at the Plover store will open on Monday, Aug. 3. The store will celebrate its Grand Opening at 9 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 13.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 25 retail stores and training centers (soon, 26!) in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Timber Rattlers team up with Miracle League of the Fox Valley to host golf outing

The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers are hitting the links to benefit the Miracle League of the Fox Valley.

timber rattlers logoThe 2015 Timber Rattlers Golf Outing will be held July 27 at Shamrock Heights Golf Course in New London.

Foursomes have the opportunity to play with a Timber Rattlers player. The cost is $350. Individual registration is $100.

Registration is due July 20 to Hilary Bauer at 920-733-4152, ext. 260, or hbauer@timberrattlers.com. Registration forms also are available at timberrattlers.com or at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute.

Miracle League is a program of Goodwill NCW that gives children ages 4-19 with cognitive and/or physical disabilities the opportunity to play baseball in an organized, noncompetitive league on a safe, accessible field with a synthetic surface.

“The Timber Rattlers have offered unbelievable support to the league and our athletes since our inaugural season in 2010,” said Lisa Robbins, Miracle League of the Fox Valley managing director/founder. “We are grateful for their continued support. They are hosts to a charity golf outing that benefits the league, Timber Rattlers players come to the field and play ball with the kids, and we’re part of their community baseball cap program. The Timber Rattlers are fabulous community partners to the Miracle League of the Fox Valley and we’re thankful for the partnership.”

The event tees off with registration at 8 a.m. and a shotgun start at 9 a.m. Lunch and snacks will be provided, and a raffle drawing and awards ceremony will conclude the outing.

Hole sponsorships are available for $100, and donations are welcome for raffle, hole and team prizes.

Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 25 retail stores and training centers in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as provides a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and 45 donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. Goodwill NCW uses the revenue from stores to fund a variety of innovative programs and services that serve north central Wisconsin communities.

Goodwill NCW to sponsor Pride Prom for LGBT youth community

Menasha — LGBT Partnership, a program of Goodwill NCW, is sponsoring Pride Prom for youth ages 14-20 who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning and allied.

The Rainbow Harmony Ball will be held 7-11 p.m. Friday, July 10, at the Marq, 3177 French Road, De Pere. There will be music and dancing.

“We put on this Pride Prom because it is an affirming, welcoming and an inclusive place for youth to be able to express themselves,” said Deanna Tappy, LGBT Partnership program leader. “If they are unable to attend their own prom, this is a safe place for them.

“Not a lot of young people are out at their schools and not a lot of young people feel safe taking who they want to their prom.”

The annual Goodwill NCW event allows attendees to express who they are, Tappy said. About 100 to 150 youth are expected.

Preslie Matuyka, 20, of Algoma stepped up to plan the event because of her experiences. Matuyka, who identifies as bisexual, said she was bullied and called names when she was in school.

When she heard that an acquaintance, who identifies as transgender, in spring had asked a girl to prom and had been painfully rejected when she said, “I only date real boys,” Matuyka joined forces with Goodwill NCW, Rainbow Over Wisconsin and Youth-Go, all sponsors of Pride Prom, to help with the event.

“It was a cool team effort,” she said.

Rainbow Over Wisconsin is sponsoring free transportation to the Marq from Green Bay and the Fox Valley. Buses will leave at 6 p.m. from the Menasha Goodwill NCW campus, 1800 Appleton Road, and the Green Bay West Retail Store and Training Center, 1660 W. Mason St.

Tickets for the Pride Prom are $15 for one or $20 for two.

LGBT Partnership is an ongoing leadership development and support group for youth ages 14-18 who identify as gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender, questioning and allied.

The group meets 6-8 p.m. Mondays at the Goodwill Green Bay West location and 6-8 p.m. Tuesdays at Lawrence University in the Science Hall Atrium, 711 E. Boldt Way, Appleton.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 25 retail stores and training centers (soon to be 26) in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as provides a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins located throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. Goodwill NCW uses the revenue from stores to fund a variety of innovative programs and services that serve north central Wisconsin communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.

Goodwill NCW building Retail Store and Training Center in Plover

Menasha — Goodwill NCW (North Central Wisconsin) will open its newest Retail Store and Training Center for shopping on Thursday, Aug. 13, 2015, in Plover’s Crossroads Commons retail area.

The Plover store, at 1017 Commons Circle, will be Goodwill NCW’s 26th in its 35-county service area, which stretches from Manitowoc to La Crosse.

The Plover Retail Store and Training Center will open Aug. 13 at 1017 Commons Circle.

The Plover Retail Store and Training Center will open Aug. 13 at 1017 Commons Circle.

A Grand Opening celebration will be held at 9 a.m., Aug. 13. More event details will be forthcoming.

The Stevens Point store, at 5373 State Hwy. 10, will remain open.

“We’re very excited to add a second store to the Stevens Point/Portage area,” said Bob Pedersen, Goodwill NCW’s president and CEO. “It’s a growing and vital area, and we’re thrilled to be able to add another option for our customers in central Wisconsin.”

The donation door at the Plover store will open on Thursday, July 23, and will be open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m., seven days a week. Goodwill resells donated clothing, furniture, electronics and other housewares, with the revenue supporting its human services work across the service area.

“Our donation and retail operations are the lifeblood of Goodwill NCW,” Pedersen said. “When you give to — and shop at — our stores, we put the revenue to work in our communities, providing programs and services that make a difference in thousands of lives every year.”

Goodwill NCW is working to expand its programs and services offerings across its service area, including central Wisconsin, Pedersen said.

“We’re always looking to create opportunity for our communities,” Pedersen said. “Our organization’s mission is ‘Elevating People, Transforming Communities.’ When we expand our reach in any market, we work to find new ways, new partnerships and collaborations, and new service areas for that community.

“Portage County is a good fit for us, in that it creates revenue potential that can be turned into ‘mission muscle’ for those in the area who need our services.”

For examples of how Goodwill NCW makes a difference, visit www.goodwillncw.org/goodstories for the GoodStories blog and www.goodwillncw.org/programs for descriptions of programs and services.

Tom Baldischwiler, Store Team Leader in Stevens Point, will assume a new role as Plover’s Store Team Leader. A new Store Team Leader will be named for the Stevens Point operation.

Approximately 40 team members will be employed in the Plover store.

For a list of job opportunities, visit www.goodwillncwjobs.com.

The Plover store will be 23,872 square feet, including a sales floor of 14,222 square feet. The facility is being built by R.J. Albright Construction, Inc., of Oshkosh.

About Goodwill NCW: Goodwill NCW is a not-for-profit human services organization that in 2014 helped improve the lives of more than 68,600 people across 35 counties in north central Wisconsin, through 27 programs and services. The organization includes 25 retail stores and training centers (soon to be 26!) in communities from Manitowoc to La Crosse, and as far north as Rice Lake and Rhinelander, as well as providing a unique shopping experience at its Appleton outlet store. It offers eight Donation Express sites and 45 convenient donation bins throughout the Fox Cities and surrounding communities. A member of Goodwill Industries International and Rehabilitation For Wisconsin, it is based at the Goodwill Community Center in Menasha. Visit the website at www.goodwillncw.org.