MEO receives funding to aid BEST program

Maui Economic Opportunity recently received a $150,000 grant from the Harry & Jeanette Weinberg Foundation to help incarcerated people and those formerly incarcerated transition back to life outside of the Maui Community Correctional Center.

The grant will be dispersed over three years and will support MEO’s “Being Empowered and Safe Together,” or BEST, reintegration program. The funds will supplement MEO’s county funding and will support workforce development for incarcerated individuals, an announcement said.

MEO has operated the program since 2003. It began with support from federal funds to provide various services to the incarcerated and formerly incarcerated individuals from MCCC. Due to federal funding cuts, the program operated solely on a grant from county’s Department of Housing and Human Concerns.

MEO Chief Executive Officer Lyn McNeff expressed gratitude for the county’s assistance with the program, which has helped more than 325 individuals.

The Weinberg grant will allow a chance to offer a broader range of assistance, she said.