In 2019, with your support, BOSS changed lives. Over 3,000 people received information, referrals, support, and kindness in a time of crisis.
Letter from the Executive Director
BOSS is proud of the work it’s been doing to tackle the issues of mass homelessness, mass incarceration, and violence prevention. This past year, we expanded supports for those returning from incarceration and in addition to graduating 98 justice-involved individuals to full employment with benefits, we opened our new Hope Reentry Campus in East Oakland and expanded our programs to include warm handoff, case management, and rental assistance. We converted McKinley House to permanent supportive housing. We also expanded our education and social innovation initiatives with programs teaching people how to advocate for large systemic societal change.
2019 was a productive year for BOSS, and we are passionate about continuing this essential work – made possible with your support.
All the best,
2019 Criminal Justice Accomplishments
- Created Neighborhood Impact Centers in East, West, and Downtown Oakland
- Expanded services to the community with Hope Reentry Campus (15 beds), Reentry Service Team (support services), and Reentry Housing Navigation Team (rental assistance)
- Graduated 98 formerly-incarcerated, now fully-employed individuals
- Began innovative rental assistance and warm handoff program
2019 Criminal Justice Outcomes
Career Training & Employment Center
Engaged in Transitional Work Programs
Hired Full Time
TAY & Young Adult Employment/ Education Support
CTEC Graduation — In October, BOSS honored its largest graduation class yet – 98 men and women who completed CTEC services and are now gainfully employed! The celebration hosted graduates, guests, family members, BOSS staff, La Familia staff, elected officials, stakeholders, and many more to celebrate loved ones who graduated from the program. These graduates are the definition of success! Many also participated in other BOSS programs such as Casa Maria, Ursula Sherman Village, and South County Housing Project. The theme of the graduation was “Family” and the impact that family support – no matter how we define family – has on our lives, success, and healing. State and local officials honored our graduations with special certificates and proclamations.
#TimeDone — Over the past year BOSS has been part of statewide public education, advocacy, and organizing with the Californians for Safety and Justice-sponsored #TimeDone campaign to raise awareness of the 4,800 different barriers citizens returning from incarceration face when trying to reenter their communities. As a result of this work and multiple Sacramento lobby days, letter writing campaigns, in-person and online outreach, and sharing the personal stories of impacted individuals, this campaign had multiple policy victories over the past year, including SB 36 – Risk Assessment Transparency, SB 375 – Removing Victim Compensation Time Limit, AB 1076 – Automatic Record Removal, AB 875 – In-School Pupil Health Support Services, and AB 1331 – Data Quality in Criminal Records.
2019 Housing Accomplishments
- Created housing and partnered with landlords to make 30+ affordable housing units available to low-income renters
- Began work on a new 42-unit West Oakland housing program
- Awarded $2.9 million State grant for reentry rental assistance
2019 Housing Outcomes
Rep Payee + Housing Clients
Housed + Stabilized in the Greater Community
Housed in BOSS Permanent Supportive Housing
Served in BOSS Interim Housing
Rising Stars — In May 2019, BOSS celebrated a group of very special young people at its 6th Annual Rising Stars Youth Leadership Gala! Youth were nominated by BOSS, Berkeley High School, and Berkeley Technology Academy, in five categories – Consistency, Caring for Family, Role Model, New Direction, and Community Involvement. The annual event honors young people who are overcoming serious challenges such as homelessness, mental illness, substance abuse, or criminal justice involvement, and are working as hard as they can to stay in school, take care of themselves and their families, and work towards college.
2019 Social Justice Accomplishments
- Began new state-wide reentry association
- Hosted Breaking Barriers 2.0
- Launched cohort-based Social Justice Innovations Project
2019 Social Justice Outcomes
Intensive Outreach Contacts
Street Outreach Sessions
Community + Social Events
Violence Prevention / Anger Management/ Conflict Resolution Sessions
Breaking Barriers 2.0 — BOSS and Californians for Safety and Justice (CSJ) hosted Breaking Barriers 2.0, a special community forum in September to continue the conversation on criminal justice reform. BB2.0 built on the progress made after the first event in 2017 and the CSJ white paper, Repairing The Road to Redemption. Bringing together justice-involved individuals, advocates, the Alameda County District Attorney, the Public Defender’s Office, and the Office of Probation, BB2.0 featured speakers and conversations on the 4,800 barriers to successful reentry and how those barriers continue to affect people’s everyday lives, what has been done, and how to continue the fight for equality.
2019 Awards & Recognition
BOSS received the Community Service Award from 100 Black Men of the Bay Area, a prestigious national award bestowed on local organizations making a difference in the lives of boys and men of color.
BOSS received the Making Democracy Work Award from the League of Women Voters of Oakland, a prestigious award bestowed annually on an organization that is making a difference in efforts to expand civic and democratic involvement, honoring BOSS and the work it has done educating and registering returning citizens and other historically low-participation voters.