All Shannon wanted was a chance.

Having endured the hardships that come with cerebral palsy her entire life, Shannon has gone through her share of ups and downs. She often got bored sitting at home, so she turned to Goodwill.

She completed our Soft Skills Academy in downtown Louisville and was later hired at our Shively store off Dixie Highway. She said she still has her good and bad days, but she’s felt like a valuable member of the team ever since she got acquainted with her fellow employees and the customers.

“Some people can be cruel,” she said. “I always tell them, if you all want to know anything, just ask me. I’ll tell you how I got like this. It’s no big deal. I do everything for myself. I like the job because it’s easy and it gets me out of the house. I do all kinds of work every day.”

She said it’s been difficult to work through the pandemic – because wearing a mask makes it hard to show off her smile to customers.

“They can’t tell I have a smile on my face,” she said. “I’m always happy.”

Despite her ups and downs, Shannon never lets it affect her work. Ronelle Huber, a Shively assistant manager, said Shannon was hesitant about her new job at first but has blossomed ever since.

“Shannon is a true asset,” Ronelle said. “For us as managers, we get pulled many directions, so it’s hard to be able to get to the front and greet customers. Shannon is able to do that for us and interact and just personify Goodwill in general. She’s very friendly, she greets the customers. She goes out of her way to direct them. We just adore Shannon.”

This hasn’t been Shannon’s first job, as she’s worked at Kroger, Dollar General and a temp agency. But she did say it’s been the best.

“The Goodwill is more relaxed,” she said. “I like it here. I have my days, then some days I go in, do what I have to do and do it all over again.”

A west Louisville resident, Shannon has faced adversity outside of her developmental disability, in the form of a lack of employment resources. She said she’s excited for Goodwill’s imminent move to west Louisville and creation of an “Opportunity Campus,” where all job seekers will be offered the resources needed to achieve self-sufficiency.

“It’s a good thing that they have programs not just for other people, but for people like me, too,” she said. “Because we all need a chance.

“No matter what they’ve got going on in their life, everybody needs a chance, no matter what.”