Dante began working at UPS in 2010. Without a vehicle, he relied on public transportation and rides from friends; working second shift, this wasn’t always easy.
“It was difficult at times,” Dante said. “I knew that if I ever wanted to advance my career, I needed my own vehicle.”
In January 2014, Dante was referred to the Goodwill Cars to Work program through The Zoom Group, a nonprofit organization dedicated to serving adults with developmental and intellectual disabilities. That March, he was matched with a vehicle, and in July 2016, he paid off his loan.
“I missed my very first payment. I was having financial struggles regarding my housing situation, but the Cars to Work staff worked with me,” Dante said. “The program worked for me exactly the way it’s designed. Not only do I own my own vehicle, but I was able to build my credit.”
Upon purchasing his car, Dante stabilized his housing situation, re-enrolled in school at Jefferson Community and Technical College, and earned a raise at work. Once making $8.50 an hour, Dante now makes $14.80.
“I’ve been making good decisions my whole life, but I’ve had a few bad breaks,” said Dante. “Finding this car was the blessing I needed.”
Danny Watts, transportation specialist for Cars to Work, added, “Dante was deeply committed to our program. He was always cheerful and kept a positive attitude. We are very proud of his success.”