More than 100 people came to Tacoma Goodwill’s new Milgard Work Opportunity Center Monday, the first day it opened to the public, according to spokesperson Matthew Erlich. While most visitors came to use the center’s Job Resource Room, others attended a GED class or a program graduation ceremony.
The day opened with Tacoma Goodwill CEO Terry A. Hayes giving words of encouragement and congratulations. The more than 100 employees in the building received a gift of a ceramic coaster depicting a color rendering of the Milgard center.
“Rejoice in what a wonderful opportunity weve been given,” said Hayes. “How blessed we are to have the support of the community to make such an incredible facility available to us so we can deliver the mission services to people in our community who need help in going to work.”
A public dedication for the new facility will take place Weds., Sept. 23 at 10 a.m. at the center, 714 S. 27th St. in Tacoma. Gov. Chris Gregoire is scheduled to attend.
The building includes REACH, a new partnership of a dozen agencies and educational institutions focusing on jobs, counseling and schooling for youth. REACH Center Director Kurt Miller said the day was “an encouraging one.”
“We’ve had a steady stream of people,” he said. “It seems like someone’s always being helped.”
REACH services are available 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday-Thursday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday. For information about REACH, visit http://www.reachtacoma.org .
The new building also includes a public restaurant, the Neighborhood Bistro, open 7 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday through Friday; and The Coffee Buzz, a coffee bar serving Starbucks coffee, open to the public 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
The third-floor entrance, with program and job resource rooms, is open 7 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. For more information about Goodwill services, contact (253) 573.6500 or visit http://www.tacomagoodwill.org .
The $21.7 million Milgard facility is a LEED Gold-qualified “green” building that supports Goodwill’s efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle. The investment will save on water and energy and promote public transportation, Hayes said.
Tacoma Goodwill was founded in 1921. When it opened its previous training and office building in 1965, the agency had three retail stores and served 500 participants. This year, Goodwill will help more than 6,000 people and operates 22 retail stores, with more scheduled to open.