Dequanus “Quan” Wilson is originally from Montgomery, Alabama. He was referred to Goodwill® in Decatur through Back on My Feet in partnership with Covenant Community, which are both non-profit organizations that support people who are unhoused.

When Quan came to Goodwill, he was looking for a second chance at life. He is a veteran of the United States Army and was open about his struggles with substance abuse and housing. His addiction led him to lose his family, his job, his freedom, and his will to survive.

After getting back on his feet, Quan knew he needed training and skills in order to make a living. He learned about Goodwill’s various training programs, and eventually enrolled in Goodwill’s welding program in February 2022. He then interned at Tie Down Engineering and was hired at Greenwood Ice Cream Factory as a Fabricator. Unfortunately, the business suffered a closing seven months after Quan was hired.

During his job search, Quan took on various temporary assignments to make ends meet while still holding down full-time employment at Publix.

At Goodwill we know that when two or more agencies collaborate, the people we serve do better. All three agencies kept in touch with Quan and his big break finally came when he received a telephone call from Covenant Community, the organization that assisted him to get back on his feet in the first place. He was being offered a position as a Residential Peer Specialist. Who would have thought? Quan would now be responsible for the residents at a place he used to live, bringing a full-circle moment in his life.

Upon his acceptance of the job offer, Quan learned that he would need a laptop before reporting to work on his first day. Quan knew that the Goodwill team was also there for him to ensure his long-term success, as he had learned about all their support resources while in training. Thankfully, Goodwill and our partner PCs for People were able to provide Quan with the resource he needed for the next step in his career jounrney, a laptop. “I was overwhelmed with gratitude, and really excited to get to work,” Quan remembers.

Today, Quan is thankful to Covenant Community, Back on My Feet, the Decatur Goodwill Team and our partners at PCs for People for giving him another chance at life and another step forward in his personal career pathway through his ABCs: A first job, Better job, and Career.