Turn90, a nonprofit that equips men to succeed after prison by providing a route to a career-path job, has received a $50,000 grant from Power:Ed, a philanthropic project of SC Student Loan. The funds will be used to hire two new staff members to lead expansion of the program’s services into the Upstate in 2023, according to a news … Read more
It takes a special person to support a nonprofit from the ground up, walking by its side through bumpy roads and hairpin turns. Turn90 is lucky; since its earliest days, Board Chair William “Bill” Finn has been there. He helped raise the funding to launch Turn90 as a viable nonprofit that has helped hundreds of men find success after prison. He’s been there through program redesigns, changes to locations and names, and even a global pandemic. Today we’re excited to tell you a little about him.
Is the American Dream still a thing? Can someone still pull himself out of poverty with hard work and dedication?
Or is that dream dead?
If ever a Turn90 student story makes you wonder, it’s this one. Solo’s parents did the right things. They worked hard. They instilled values in their children, teaching them right from wrong.
It wasn’t enough to keep their son safe.
Men coming home from prison routinely face obstacles that are difficult to overcome: lack of housing, transportation, and identification are three of the many issues faced as a result of separation from society over years or even decades. Turn90 has built a network of referral relationships to connect our program participants to the supportive services they need.
Recent feedback told us it’s not enough.
You already know Turn90 is the Print Shop with a Purpose. We are the most logical choice for screen printing in South Carolina for anyone who wants their hard-earned money to serve people who need a little extra help. We operate in Columbia and Charleston but we’re happy to ship elsewhere, even out of state.
But we’re also a fully-functioning professional screen-printing shop dedicated to meeting all your apparel needs on time and meeting the highest quality standards. To that end, every garment that goes to press passes through no less than SIX quality assurance checkpoints.
Perhaps the most telling part of Tonio’s story is that he refers to his childhood neighborhood, where he saw drug sales and violence, as “regular.” It’s what he saw, what he knew. His tendencies toward class-clowning brought him trouble early and his hot temper carried that trouble through to adulthood, but lately, he’s been focused. He’s set to make history as the first active Turn90 participant to earn his GED, and he has big plans for what he’s doing after he graduates.
It’s important to note, however, that violence against Black people doesn’t just come from radicalized white men. The truth is most of the death comes from violence on the streets of cities across America. Cities like North Charleston, which remains Turn90’s home headquarters. The experiences of the men we serve bear that out; a recent informal survey found that, of the eight Black men in our Print Shop on a Friday afternoon, seven of them knew someone impacted by gun violence or death. When Malik told us his story, he spoke of at least four murders committed by Black men against other Black men, three of which have to date gone unsolved.
The streets seemed magical to Malik. The guys out there had all the cool things: jewelry, Jordans, Starter jackets. By age 12, an older boy, already heavily involved in the streets, took a liking to Malik. “He took me under his wing,” Malik says. “He showed me everything. How to cook, how to package. He told me who would buy from me. He sold me my first gun.”
In this episode, Amy and Jeffrey discuss her path to starting Turn90, what the future holds for the organization, second chance hiring, reducing recidivism, and much more…
We hear it all the time. The square life – this rule-following, law-abiding life we ask Turn90 participants to lead – is boring. Long days at work, long nights at home. There’s no thrill, not like our guys are used to.
Because the streets move fast. They’re unpredictable. Exciting. Money comes fast.
But then, so does the chance to lose everything.
This is Melo’s story.