Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2013, $300,000)
The Second Chance Act of 2007 (Pub. L. 110-199) reflects a comprehensive response to the increasing number of people who are released from prison and jail and are returning to communities. Section 211 of the Act authorizes grants to nonprofit organizations and federally recognized Indian tribes that may be used for mentoring projects to promote the safe and successful reintegration into the community of adults who have been incarcerated. "Mentoring" refers to a developmental relationship in which a more experienced person helps a less experienced person develop an enhanced sense of self-worth and specific knowledge and skills to increase the chance of successful reentry.
The goal of this program is to promote more effective and successful reentry for offenders through the establishment and maintenance of pre- and post-release mentoring relationships. The objectives of this program are to establish or improve the administration of mentoring programs, including the expansion of mentoring strategies and program design; enhance and improve the organizational capacity, system efficiency, and cost effectiveness of mentoring programs through training and technical assistance and other strategies, and; improve outcomes for offenders in mentoring programs by establishing and strengthening collaborative community approaches.
The United Teen Equality Center will use their Second Chance Act Grant funds to run a mentoring program for offenders aged 18 to 24 currently housed at correctional facilities in Middlesex and Essex Counties and who live in or have planned release to Lowell or Lawrence, MA. The program will assist the participants in preparing to transition back to the community.