Career Center Resources

to support you in your new journey



To make a difference together, with dignity and joy!


Goodwill will be recognized in excellence in community leadership, partnership, and the provision of employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities.


Goodwill is a social enterprise providing individuals with disabilities the opportunity to enhance their lives through meaningful employment.


Inspiring Albertans to make a difference.




The Career Connections program supports people with developmental disabilities in locating and maintaining employment or volunteer opportunities in their communities. Individuals are assisted with identifying their employment goals, employment preparation, job search, and employment coaching.

In 2019, Career Connections served 167 individuals with disabilities. This includes 46 Individuals who received new employment, 13,000 volunteer hours in the community, and 22 who graduated from the program.


The Career Connections program accepts applicants for Employment Preparation (2010) Employment Placement (2020) and Community Access (3000) who meet the following criteria:
  • The applicant must fall within one or more of the following referral categories in order to be eligible
    • The applicant is referred to Career Connections by Persons with Disabilities Program (PDD)
    • The applicant must self-identify as having an intellectual disability or Autism Spectrum Disorder and be legally entitled to work in Canada (RWA).
  • The applicant must want an employment and/or volunteer outcome (part-time or full-time).
  • The applicant must be willing to share personal information, including SIN numbers, with Career Connections and funding partners for documentation. Applicants may also be asked to submit a criminal record check to employers. As such, applicants should be willing to have a criminal check completed as a condition of their employment.
  • The applicant must be free of any behaviors or conditions that may be a significant threat to the safety or well-being of themselves and/or others, or to the environment and equipment with which they will be in contact. Alternatively, they must have these conditions stabilized by medication that they are able to self-administer, and/or take with the assistance of their own care provider, program supports, or the Career Connections staff.
  • The applicant’s physical and mental health must be stable at the time of application.
  • Applicants with alcohol or drug abuse concerns must be willing to abstain from the use of alcohol and/or drugs during program and/or employment hours. Upon admission, applicants with addiction concerns will be encouraged to enroll and participate in an appropriate treatment/support program.
  • Regarding applicants who require medications:
    • If an applicant is referred through PDD and uses medications during program and/or employment hours, applicants must establish a medication administration protocol with the Career Connections before accessing supports.
    • If an applicant is not referred through PDD and uses medication during the program and/or employment hours, applicants must be able to self-administer their own medications or have supports organized and available to assist with medication administration in order to receive supports.
  • Applicants should be able to complete most personal care tasks independently (e.g. the applicant should be able to utilize the washroom, feed themselves, identify and communicate if they are tired, hungry, thirsty, feeling in danger, etc.). Additional supports can be offered but are subject to Career Connections approval.
  • Applicants should have the potential to work toward independence in a work or volunteer setting. However, PDD referrals which require 2:1 or 3:1 on-going coaching support will be considered.
  • The applicant must be supplied with the necessary corrective appliances prior to admission (e.g. eyeglasses, hearing aids, dentures, prostheses) to enable maximum social and physical participation in the supports.
  • Applicants must be able to communicate with others through speech, writing, or other means to the extent that they can make their basic needs known and respond meaningfully to simple, direct questions and instructions.



The Career Connections program accepts applications for admission throughout the year. Once an application is received, the Intake Specialist will schedule an eligibility meeting with the individual and guardian (if applicable). The Intake Specialist will review the application with the applicant and discuss employment history, career goals, and program suitability. At this time, the Intake Specialist will outline the types of career development, employment or volunteer support offered though the Career Connections program. Further information may be requested to verify that the applicant meets the eligibility criteria. This may include:
  • Academic records.
  • Medical, psychological, social and behavioral history.
  • Employment and/or volunteer experience.
  • Previous direct services and supports, etc.
  • Any other information as deemed necessary
  • A letter from your Doctor
Goodwill will accept eligible applicants according to program-specific eligibility criteria. If there is not sufficient space to begin services immediately, they will be asked if they would like to be placed on the Wait List or referred their Disability Services Caseworker.

Applicants who meet the eligibility criteria will be conditionally accepted into the Career Connections program and an Individual Service Request (ISR) will be submitted to Disability Services. The ISR can take up to three weeks to process by Disability Services. Once Disability Services approves the ISR, eligible applicants must participate in a skills and eligibility assessment.

Official acceptance to the program is dependent upon the results of the skills assessment.

Applicants may not be accepted into the program if the outcome of the eligibility meeting or skills assessment determines they do not meet the eligibility criteria. The applicant may appeal this decision by contacting Vice President of Career Connections. If information was collected in error, or if other information can be provided to support the applicant’s admission, the application will be reviewed and another decision may be rendered.

When an applicant’s needs cannot be met by the organization’s supports, the Career Connections Intake Specialist will inform the applicant by telephone and in writing of the decision. The applicant will be provided with relevant information regarding other agencies that provide more appropriate supports.


All eligible Individuals must participate in a skills assessment. Employment skills and abilities will be assessed during hands on activities in a work or volunteer setting. This assessment will determine program suitability, identify how Career Connections can best provide support, and identify areas where additional supports may be required.

Upon completion of the assessment, individuals may be officially accepted into Career Connections or found ineligible for further Goodwill support. A copy of the assessment report will be provided to and reviewed with the individual. career_flowchart



Goodwill will ensure that all persons served through Career Connections receive a comprehensive orientation to the agency and its services. A Community Employment navigator, Employment Coach or Career and Skill Development Specialist will meet with the Individual to complete four (4) Career Discovery workshops to assist with mapping out a career path. During Career Discovery, an Interest Inventory will be completed to explore deeper into the Individual’s employment interests and abilities.


Once Career Discovery has been completed, the Community Employment navigator will book a Person-Centered Plan (PCP) and Individual Support Plan (ISP) meeting with the Individual and the Job Development Specialist. A PCP is created with specific employment or volunteer goals with the Community Employment Navigator. An ISP will then be submitted to Disability Services which details the goals, specific measurable objectives, and who will be responsible for the implementation. PCP meetings will be held every six (6) months and ISPs will be completed yearly at the annual meetings.


Individuals can register and attend Career Development Centre workshops to develop workplace readiness through practical skill building workshops. Workshops are intended to help Individuals build a strong understanding of workplace expectations, interviewing, rights and responsibilities and workplace etiquette with a focus on building skills in order to be employment ready. Monthly workshop schedules will be provided for Individuals to register with the Community Employment Navigator.


Job Development Specialists will meet with Individuals at various meetings to discuss their career goals outlined in the PCP and ISP. Job Development Specialists develop relationships with potential employers to create volunteer, work experience, and employment opportunities. Career Connections focuses on matching Individual abilities to the specific needs of the employers.


Employment Coaching

Once a position is obtained, employment coaching supports are determined to help the Individual be successful at the new placement. Employment Coaching includes:
  • Assisting the Individual’s transition into their new position
  • Ensuring the Individual is performing the tasks to the employer’s expectations
  • Addressing accessibility/accommodation needs
  • Promoting natural supports in an effort to gradually decrease on-site support as the Individual becomes more independent in their position

Fading of Supports

All individuals working towards independence will work with their Community Employment Navigator and Employer on creating a fading plan to gradually decrease employment coaching over time.


Once Independence is established and employment coaching is no longer needed, regular check-ins with the Individual and the employer will be completed by the Community Employment Navigator.


Graduation will occur when the Individual has been successfully independent at their placement and no longer requires Goodwill supports. A meeting will be held where a graduation letter and report will be reviewed to outline services provided and information for readmission to the program. A copy of the Individual’s resume will be updated and provided.

End of Service will occur after all available resources have been exhausted. End of Service from Goodwill may happen for any of the following reasons:
  • The Individuals exhibits behaviors that may make him/her a threat or safety risk to him/herself or to others
  • The Individuals emotional/physical/cognitive status is such that support continuance is unrealistic at the time
  • The Individual is unable to meet his/her self-care needs
  • The Individual sexually harasses or assaults another person while in services
  • The Individual does not want/declines to participate in supports, including no contact
  • The Individual no longer meets Eligibility for Supports criteria


If an individual (you) has a concern:
  • Tell the Employment Coach and/or Navigator
  • If concern not solved, tell a Manager of Career Connections and a meeting will be scheduled within 15 working days
  • If concern not solved after the meeting, the Vice President of Career Connections will schedule a meeting with all concerned and have a written decision given to you within 10 working days
  • If concern not solved, a meeting with the President/CEO of Goodwill will schedule a meeting within 5 working days with all concerned and a written decision will be given to you within 10 working days
Goodwill will provide support in getting an external advocate. Goodwill will not take any action that will result in retaliation or barriers to support because of an individual filing a grievance. External advocates may provide additional support.



The Individual will collaborate in all levels of employment/volunteer support, as per Goodwill processes, including participating in any planning, job search, PCP, ISP, etc. in a positive and professional manner.


The Intake Specialist provides information about Career Connections to various stakeholders (applicants/persons with disabilities, employers, Disability Services, service providers, members of the public). The Intake Specialist also ensures incoming Individuals meet Career Connections’ eligibility criteria.


Community Employment Navigators provide individualized case management and coaching, and are responsible for file maintenance including acting as a liaison between individuals, employers, and their support network to ensure success and independence for the Individual in the workplace.


The Community Relations & Employment Coordinator provides individualized case management to adults with disabilities that are looking to obtain or maintain employment or volunteer in the community. The Community Relations & Employment Coordinator is responsible for file maintenance including acting as a liaison between individuals, employers, and their support network to ensure success for the individual. They will also act as a Goodwill ambassador within the community and may involve opportunities for the Career Connections and Donated Goods & Retail teams.


The Employment Coaches play a critical role in providing training and coaching for people with disabilities whose goal is to become as independent as possible in their community jobs and/or volunteer positions. The Employment Coaches support individuals so they can progress and learn how to perform their jobs accurately, efficiently, safely and successfully.


Job Development Specialists actively develop new employment and volunteer sites for Individuals seeking employment opportunities.


The Career and Skill Development Specialist actively develops and presents workshops to Individuals seeking employment and volunteer work, helping to prepare Individuals for a successful career.


The Manager of Program Delivery is responsible for the management, supervision, and coordination of Career Connections team members. The Manager of Quality Assurance is responsible for the continuous improvement, evaluation, reporting, and integrity of the Career Connections program.


The Vice President of Career Connections is accountable for providing strategic guidance, leadership, and mentorship to the team by acting as a senior advisor providing strategic guidance and advocacy for all mission related programs, activities, and events.


Career Connections offices are open Monday to Friday from 8:00 AM – 4:00 PM. Career Connections offices are closed on statutory holidays.


2nd Floor, 10110 Whyte Avenue
Edmonton, AB T6E 1Z4
Sherwood Park
130 Athabascan Avenue
Sherwood Park, AB T8A 4E3
Spruce Grove
98 McLeod Avenue
Spruce Grove, AB T7X 1R2