Then and Now

Goodwill Industries was founded in Boston, MA in 1902, by a Methodist minister named Edgar J. Helms who believed in “Not Charity But A Chance,” the foundation upon which Goodwill’s have been built ever since. In fact, Goodwill’s have been founded in nearly 200 cities throughout North America, with 40 additional associations having been established in other parts of the world.

While Goodwill is non-secular, it embraces spirituality, heart and stewardship, focusing on the dignity of every single human being. It operates on the premise, “Give a man a fish and you have fed him a meal; teach a man to fish and you have given him a way to feed himself for the rest of his life…” Goodwill is about changing people’s lives for the long term. It is about helping a person to develop the skills, self-esteem and sense of purpose needed to live a productive life with quality and happiness…

Goodwill Industries of Houston has been empowering people to succeed in life since 1945. This Goodwill was established through the vision and inspiration of W.C.Morris, Sr. and the Rotary Club of Houston. In the beginning, Goodwill opened its barrier-free doors to “nine handicapped people and one able bodied person” at 201 San Jacinto Street (where the Court of Family Law building now stands).

Six years later, Goodwill moved to the corner of Smith and Prairie (where the Alley Theatre is now located). Then, in 1965 Goodwill moved to its second location: Goodwill’s main campus comprised of 22 acres of land in Houston’s Fifth Ward at 5200 Jensen Drive and included the largest Goodwill store in Texas. This land sold in the summer of 2005 and Goodwill moved to 10795 Hammerly where it saw five years of great growth. By fall of 2011, Goodwill was able to secure a larger space at 1140 West Loop North where it currently resides.

For 60 years, Goodwill has been committed to providing that we are “Changing Lives Through the Power of Work” and become productive, tax-paying members of society. It is Goodwill’s honor and privilege to play a vital role in strengthening the Greater Houston, Galveston community proving that “New Lives Start Here!”