This grant project will establish Better Futures Enterprises (BFE), formerly known as the NetWork for Better Futures, as a national model for re-entry policy and practice. BFE is a comprehensive approach to addressing the needs of high-risk men in the Twin Cities metro area who have a history of some combination of substance abuse, mental illness, chronic unemployment, incarceration and homelessness. These men are very likely to enter or re-enter state or county correctional programs or chemical-abuse or mental health programs. BFE has been operating as a demonstration program authorized by the Minnesota Legislature and has received funding from the state Department of Corrections. BFE used the state funding to calculate a fixed rate that is significantly lower than the cost of prison or jail, in return for which it promised increased participant income; improved health; increased child-support payments; reduced use of jail, prison and acute health care systems; and positive engagement in the community. Over 30 months, BFE has enrolled and served 400 high-risk men, and a preliminary analysis shows that every dollar invested generates up to four dollars for the community in the form of taxes and child support paid by participants, and reduced criminal behavior, homelessness and use of social services. Deliverables will include: (1) securing at least one new state/county contract financed using a capitated rate with some risk sharing; (2) replication of the model in three new communities; (3) completion of an evaluation of BFE's outcomes; and 4) a national meeting to highlight best practices in re-entry practice and policy using this more comprehensive health-based approach.
Amount Awarded $3,500,000.00
Awarded on: 2/7/2011
Time frame: 2/15/2011 - 2/14/2014
Grant Number: 68465