Examples of What We are Seeking:

The Doe Fund: The Doe Fund’s flagship Ready, Willing & Able program is a nine-to-twelve month residential transitional work program, originally developed to address the homelessness crisis of the mid-1980s, that has proven to effectively manage an individual’s return from prison:  A study by Dr. Bruce Western at Harvard University showed that Ready, Willing & Able reduces future felony convictions by 60% and the risk of police contact of any kind by one-third.  The program also saves the citizens of New York millions of dollars each year; an independent audit of the program concluded that for every dollar utilized by Ready, Willing & Able, the taxpayer saved $3.60. Today, the program’s three facilities provide housing and social services for 670 individuals, 400 of whom have chosen to engage with the program’s offerings and requirements. Ready, Willing & Able has produced 6,400 graduates since 1990.

At the program’s core is a culture of work, focused on the restoration of dignity through productivity. The opportunity to go to work and earn money starts on a trainee’s first day in the program. In a 2015 study produced by the Urban Institute, transitional jobs proved to be more effective at driving down poverty than any other utilized method.  

The program that surrounds paid work is rigorous, requiring a regular 35 hour work week, participation in evening educational programs, payment of child support, abstinence from drugs and alcohol and other responsibilities. The program’s high expectations and “tough love” are balanced by support from staff who are often mentors to trainees: 70% of program employees are graduates of the program, themselves. The result is an internal, self-reinforcing culture of personal responsibility and earned success. 

Insight Garden Progam (IGP) facilitates an innovative curriculum combined with vocational gardening and landscaping training so that people in prison can reconnect to self, community, and the natural world. This “inner” and “outer” gardening approach transforms lives, ends ongoing cycles of incarceration, and creates safer communities.

Before applying, please be sure to read our guidelines. It may save you valuable time! We do not award grants to organizations or programs that don't meet our guidelines.

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