Yvonne Adame, a student at the Goodwill San Antoio Good Careers Academy will be graduating in March 2024 with her medical assistance certification.

Breaking Barriers for a Brighter Future: How a Single Mother Embarked on an Inspiring Journey at Goodwill San Antonio

In downtown San Antonio, amidst the hustle and bustle of the city, Yvonne Adame sits inside the Goodwill Good Careers Academy. At 59, Yvonne found herself standing at a crossroads in life, but despite facing numerous setbacks, she was determined to rewrite her story.  

For thirty years, Yvonne worked in the automotive industry, but in 2023 circumstances dealt her a challenging hand. That year she was laid off from her job, endured the death of her sister, and her husband - once a pillar of support - left her for reasons she couldn’t fathom.  

“That year I remember being in a very dark place. And my sister had told me to ‘always remember that you are resilient and trust in the lord’,” said Yvonne. 

With bills piling up and a teenager to support, Yvonne knew she needed to find a way to provide a future for her family. Amid her struggles, she was introduced to the Goodwill Good Careers Academy, a school providing free training and certifications in commercial driver’s license, nurse’s aide, pharmacy technician, and medical assistant.  

“One day a friend told me about the Goodwill Good Careers Academy, so I called that same day, and within a week I was enrolled in the nurse’s aide program,” said Yvonne. 

As an unconventional student, Yvonne faced the challenges of balancing her responsibilities as a mother and studying late into the night. It was with the community of her Goodwill family, that proved to be a supportive network and encouraged her to press on. 

“Goodwill was my support,” said Yvonne. “My instructor, Ms. Grady, was so awesome- she had so much patience and grace.” 

For Yvonne, the setbacks she faced fueled her determination. Each obstacle she overcame strengthened her spirit, not just for herself, but for her son, who looked up to her as a source of inspiration. Eight months after enrolling in the Goodwill Good Careers Academy, she donned her cap and gown and walked across the stage to receive her nurse’s aide certification.  

Today, Yvonne has returned to the Academy to pursue yet another milestone, her medical assistant certification. With her MA graduation approaching in March, she has already enrolled at St. Phillips College. 

“I’m 59, and it’s never too late,” said Yvonne, who hopes to work in palliative hospice care. “There’s a lot of women my age who are going through my situation. They are afraid and think that they can’t do it on their own. But if I can do it, they can too.” 

When you donate and shop at Goodwill San Antonio, you help provide GOOD jobs, career training, and employment placement services at no cost to individuals in our community. To find the nearest donation center click here. To learn more about the free career training available at Goodwill click here, or call 210-924-8581. 

By, Yvonne Zamora Byrd, Multimedia Design Manager