$150,000 Grant Supports Maui Prisoner Reintegration Program
By Wendy Osher
Maui Economic Opportunity announced the receipt of a $150,000 three-year grant from The Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation to support its Being Empowered and Safe Together prisoner reintegration program.
According to the MEO announcement, the funds will supplement the agency’s county funding, and will support workforce development for incarcerated individuals as they work towards successful reintegration into the community.
Agency officials say the program has been providing an array of services to both incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals from the Maui Community Correctional Center, located in Central Maui.
The program was launched on Maui more than a decade ago with the support of federal funds, but has been operating solely on a grant from the county Department of Housing and Human Concerns for the past four years due to federal funding cuts, MEO officials said.
Maui Economic Opportunity CEO Lyn McNeff issued a statement saying county funding to date has enabled the assistance of more than 325 individuals through the program.
“The Weinberg Foundation grant,” she said, “will allow us to offer a broader range of assistance which will remove barriers that prevent incarcerated individuals from obtaining and retaining employment. This will definitely increase their chances for success,” said McNeff.
MEO was one of 12 non-profits funded through the foundation, and was the only neighbor island agency to receive funds through The Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation’s new multi-year funding program, according to the announcement.