U of I College In Prison Program Receives $90,000 Grant

February 25, 2019
 
Five inmates at the Danville Correction Center created a mural composed of eight parts featuring the portraits of respected alums of the DCC college in prison program, the Education Justice Program. The artists behind the piece are also en

Five inmates at the Danville Correction Center created a mural composed of eight parts featuring the portraits of respected alums of the DCC college in prison program, the Education Justice Program. The artists behind the piece are also enrolled in the program. The work is featured at the Urbana co-op, Common Ground.

Travis Stansel/Illinois Public Media

The University of Illinois Education Justice Project recently received a grant to assist with its fundraising efforts. EJP is a college in prison program serving people incarcerated at the Danville Correctional Center. 

Rebecca Ginsburg, a U of I professor and the director of EJP, said the $90,000 grant from the Laughing Gull Foundation will be used to support the program's grassroots fundraising efforts. EJP is among 22 higher education in prison programs that recently received grants from the foundation.

Ginsburg said the program, which also receives some funding from the U of I as well as private foundations, relies on donations from communtiy members. She said those donations pay for course materials for incarcerated students as well as reentry guides for people returning home from prison. She said the group now has two reentry guides -- one for Illinois and one for people who are deported to Mexico and Central America. 

"We use donor funds to both print the guides and distribute them to people across the country," Ginsburg said.

Donor funds are also used to support scholarships for formerly incarcerated people, their family members as well as relatives of Illinois Department of Corrections and Juvenile Justice staff members. She said the program recently increased the dollar amount of their scholarships from $500 to $1,000.

More information about the scholarships and EJP can be found here.

Follow Lee Gaines on Twitter: @LeeVGaines

Story source: WILL