Beginnings and Mission

 

Over 25 years ago, my Dad, a commercial roofing contractor, shared one of his frustrations…
“I’m going to have to let this guy go and I hate it. If someone could work with him and spend some time teaching him how to work, I think he could be an excellent roofer; but right now, I need someone who’s ready to go to work.”

Fast forward to 2021 and I’m working for a Nashville-based nonprofit. While diversifying outreach programs I created a job training program in culinary arts and warehouse management. I learned every way not to run a job training program because I tried to do everything for everybody and quickly learned, that doesn’t work.

What I took away from that first year became the tenets forming the vision and mission of InVocation:

1.  Many need the basic documentation to apply for a job.
So we help them get an ID, birth certificate and/or social security card and cover the costs.


2.  Many do not know how to complete a basic job application.
So we coach them through answering all the questions, even the hard to answer ones related to life choices and consequences.


3.  Most do not have reliable transportation.
So we provide van routes across several counties and cover the costs.


4.  Many do not have access to or resources for meals during the course of a work day.
So we provide daily lunch while they’re in training and cover the costs.


5.  Most are overqualified at leaving a job without explanation or being terminated.
So we practice second chances and coaching before we practice choices and consequences.

I also learned that trainees need to practice in real-life situations with the actual products that they’ll be working with in their job. For this, we connected with Good360, a donation broker of sorts between large corporate producers and 501c’s, like us, who donate those products to people in need.

This connection enables our warehouse trainees to sort real products, handle real temptation around high dollar items and work in a real facility.

What to do with all of these donated products?

Give them away.

We started with a Give One Get One Christmas event serving almost 1000 children. Then we added a Giving Bus during the COVID pandemic to distribute needed items to communities in distress. And, in 2023, we opened the Giving is Good Partner Store in Dickson, TN - a place where our nonprofit partners, churches and schools can come to select the items they need.

When you sum it all up, our mission is to identify and overcome barriers by providing resources to individuals, nonprofit organizations, churches and schools.

Whether you need a job, want to provide a job or you're looking for the resources to better operate your organization and serve your community; we’re here to help.