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New Start Project was founded in May of 2013 by people who were personally impacted by the criminal justice system. Founders included formerly incarcerated people and people whose family and friends are incarcerated. Founders were keenly aware of the devastating impact that incarceration has on their family and community. In addition, founders knew from personal experience that limited re-entry systems undermine the ability of formerly incarcerated people to succeed and remain out of prison.
Founders met with re-entry programs that organized for systemic changes and/or provided directs services from Boston to Worcester to shape our direction and design the infrastructure. Since our founding NSP has launched a mentoring program, a series of community dialogues, & leadership training.
• 90% of NSP re-entry members have avoided re-incarceration;
• 70% have competed a job training program or obtained employment;
• NSP added 58 new individual donors in 2015.
• Re-entry, community, and faith based organizations have met to focus on common issues; Community dialogues have explored: the failure of mass incarceration, including how mandatory minimum sentencing has expanded prison populations without reducing crime; the affordable housing crisis and the additional barriers that re-entry residents face.
• Launched a space that provides a food pantry, clothing bank, and computers for Job Search and resume writing for 144 re-entry residents.
• Hosted CORI Job Fairs in Dorchester and Brockton MA in partnership with the Greater Brockton Re-entry Coalition and Codman Square Neighborhood Development Corporation where 100 people learned about resume writing and received job interview training. Collected over 500 signatures for the Jobs Not Jails Campaign.
• Conducted organizational leadership training that focuses on board and strategy development for 10 re-entry, community, and faith based organizations.