Summer is the greatest time of need for many nonprofits in Charlotte, when needs are high and supplies are low. CCT is no exception. SummerSHARE, presented by Bank of America, is a fun way for YOU to make an impact and see exactly where your dollars are going!
CCT’s greatest need this summer is backpacks for children impacted by incarceration. Backpacks and other school supplies are costly, especially for households who are experiencing financial instability due to incarceration. You can help lighten the burden by donating backpacks and other school supplies. <READ MORE>
CCT held its 5th Annual Spring Fling event on May 11th. The event was a great success with the highest turnout yet! We had a great time honoring our volunteers and supporters which enjoying live jazz music and FUNdraising activities. For the first time ever, we held the event at the Goodwill Opportunity Campus. The community garden provided an excellent backdrop for this event which celebrates growth and fresh starts.
Congratulations to volunteers of the year, Betty Ritchie, Joanna Patcha, and Tom Brown. Further congratulations to our employer of the year, Sam’s Sandwich Shop, which has been offering fair chance hiring and supporting CCT for over a decade. Last but not least, thank you and congratulations to this year’s Community of Faith award recipient, New Beginnings Church, which has sent us many committed volunteers and great programming.
It’s #DoGoodWeek in Charlotte – a week of honoring AND recruiting volunteers! CCT Executive Director, Myra Clark, and CCT Volunteer, Joanna Patcha, appeared on FOX 46’s “Good Day” show to talk about our work and some volunteer opportunities.
It’s fitting then that we also visited our state legislators today as part of a coalition of reentry organizations across NC called the Second Chance Alliance. On behalf of our clients, we lobbied for several pieces of legislation that make sense for reentry and are smart on crime. Download the attached to see a full list of legislation we’re supporting, and follow us on Facebook or Twitter for legislative updates.
Last week volunteer extraordinaire, Pam Eavenson, assisted residents of the Center for Women with starting a vegetable and herb garden. The garden is on the grounds of our main facility and we look forward to watching it grow alongside our residents. Make sure you check it out next time you visit.
NC has reduced its use of solitary confinement by more than 50% since 2012 but still has a long way to go according to a recently released Vera Institute report. Currently, incarcerated individuals may find themselves in solitary confinement (also known as segregation units) for minor infractions such as swearing. At some state facilities the average time spent in solitary is nearly five years. The Vera Institute also found racial disparities in the use of solitary. The state faces major staff shortages making it difficult to provide alternatives to segregation. The report also pointed out that many people are being released from years in solitary confinement directly back into the community, making their transition all the more difficult. The institute recommends moving people out of solitary Confinement and into reentry units. CCT is glad the state leadership is committed to continuing to take steps to reduce the use of solitary confinment and to put more resources toward reentry housing units. To learn more, read the article in the Charlotte Observer.
The Charlotte Opportunity Task Force, a group of 20 community members who spent 18 months studying intergenerational povery in Charlotte-Mecklenburg, released its report at the end of March. Charlotte-Mecklenburg was ranked 50th out of 50 in an economic mobility study conducted on America’s largest cities in 2013, and the task force aimed to discover the causes of constrained mobility and propose solutions. The Task Force included the collateral consequences of incarceration in the report. Incarceration effects family strength and stability, income, savings, education, and housing. As the city moves forward in trying to address the concerns raised in the report, CCT expects to see reentry assistance and policy advocacy opportunities related to mitigating the effects of incarceration on families and individuals. You can read the full report at https://leadingonopportunity.org/
In partnership with Goodwill Industries of the Southern Piedmont and Carolinas Institute for Entrepreneurship, CCT launched a new four-week course called Business Bootcamp. It is a four-week course on business basics for people thinking about starting their own business. To our delight, several of the students are interested in starting their own nonprofit organizations! We are in talks about offering the course again in the future.
CCT LifeWorks! has been working with Goodwill Southern Piedmont and Gaston County to bring some of their programming to reentry clients in Gastonia. In February, they conducted a day long workshop with federal inmates at the Gaston County Jail. The program was well-received, and talks are ongoing to bring more services to the area.