Second Chance Awarded Two-Year Federal Grant of $820,000 to Serve San Diego Youth Through STRIVE for the Future

U.S. Department of Labor-Funded Initiative to Provide Training, Education and Employment to Formerly Incarcerated Youth

San Diego, CA, January 13, 2013 --( Second Chance, a San Diego-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to creating opportunities for self-sufficiency through job readiness training programs and comprehensive wrap-around services, has been awarded a two year, $820,000 grant by STRIVE to provide training and employment services to formerly incarcerated juveniles and young adults in San Diego County. The grant will enable Second Chance to serve local youth, ages 14 to 21, from the East Mesa Juvenile Detention Facility and Kearny Mesa Juvenile Detention Facility, in addition to youth exiting Camp Barrett, Girls Rehabilitation Facility and the Juvenile Ranch Facilities. Through a new U.S. Department of Labor-funded program called STRIVE for the Future, Second Chance will initiate a three phase training course to give these youth a fresh start.

“We are thrilled to be a part of the STRIVE for the Future program and grateful to have the opportunity to further our efforts for our local youth,” said Robert Coleman, executive director, Second Chance. “This new initiative provides the resources we need to give local youth a second chance to get out of a dangerous routine, find a job or schooling opportunity, become a proactive member of the community and truly succeed.”

STRIVE for the Future will include a two-week job readiness and behavior modification class and a 10-week paid, hands-on training internship in urban agriculture, environmental restoration or plumbing. Students will also receive youth development programming, life skills training, gang intervention services and work towards earning their high school diplomas or GEDs. In the final phase of the STRIVE for the Future program, Second Chance staff will work individually with each youth to find placement in employment, post-secondary education, secondary school or advance training in a desired area of interest. All of these services are funded by the U.S. Department of Labor.

“These young people deserve a chance to turn their lives around," said Secretary of Labor, Hilda L. Solis, in the U.S. Department of Labor’s news release. "The federal grants announced today will help vulnerable youth receive the training and support they need to gain valuable job skills and improve their long-term employment prospects."

Since initiating the Juvenile Options for Lifelong Transitions (JOLT) program for local youth in 2009, Second Chance has served more than 250 young individuals with a history of incarceration and gang involvement. Employing a tough-love stance, Second Chance programs are no easy feat for the students, but the pay-off is a job, a second chance and a fresh start.

Second Chance is a sub grantee of STRIVE and a member of the STRIVE affiliate network, a national network of nonprofit workforce development organizations that run the innovative STRIVE employment model. STRIVE began in East Harlem in 1984 and today has helped nearly 50,000 at-risk Americans develop the skills and behaviors they need to find and keep a job across more than 25 affiliates nationwide.

For more information about Second Chance and opportunities to donate and volunteer, visit or call (619) 839-0950.

About Second Chance:
Established in 1993, Second Chance is a San Diego-based nonprofit 501(c)(3) dedicated to empowering people to change their lives and strengthen communities. Through its workforce readiness training and job placement programs and services, the nonprofit organization gives individuals a second chance at becoming contributing members of society, improving public health, safety and financial stability. Second Chance serves at-risk youth, adults, veterans, former substance abusers, and formerly incarcerated persons. Second Chance programs result in a more stable community, a reduction in government costs, and a powerful response to the State of California’s prison realignment program. For more information, visit
Second Chance
Chelsea Thompson
(949) 436-3537