Safer Foundation Extends RFP Deadline
Date:  08-27-2014

Seeks service providers to help improve outcomes for court-involved youth
New Deadline is September 24, 2014

CHICAGO--August 25, 2014 - The Safer Foundation (Safer) is extending the deadline for nonprofit organizations to apply for community grants through the Safer Midwest Reentry and Employment Network (MREN). Funded by the U.S. Department of Labor, MREN grants will allow organizations to develop programs that address employment barriers for court-involved youth 17-24, helping them develop the skills needed to obtain good jobs. Organizations interested in submitting a proposal should go to the Safer Foundation website.

"Safer Foundation is delighted to be the pass-through for federal funding to help our youth here in Chicago and other Midwestern cities. We have long valued collaboration as the most powerful tool to bring meaningful change," said Safer President and CEO Victor Dickson, "Safer Midwest Reentry and Employment Network is a tangible example of Safer Foundation's commitment to building partnerships with other agencies serving the justice- involved, in this case our youth. We are confident that Safer MREN will assist youth in securing expungement of their records and meaningful employment."

The RFP process seeks to identify community organizations serving high-poverty, high-crime areas capable of providing core services that include youth intensive case management, mentoring, educational interventions, service learning, occupational training in in-demand industries, workforce development and follow-up services. Also required are expungement and diversion services, which research confirms are proven or promising strategies that improve life outcomes for court-involved youth. Organizations are encouraged to collaborate/partner with local organizations with the legal expertise to assist in providing criminal records relief.

Safer plans to award up to four MREN grants, ranging from $125,000 to $250,000 per year, for three years. Services will be provided in at least two states, and the targeted areas are Chicago; St. Louis; Milwaukee; and Davenport, Ia.

These grants will systematically improve the workforce outcomes of court-involved youth who will obtain industry-recognized credentials that prepare them for jobs in in-demand industries using career pathways, as well as impacting outcomes from other types of training and educational supports. Organizations interested in submitting a proposal should go to the Safer Foundation website. Proposals must be received by 5 p.m. CDT Sept. 24, 2014.

About Safer Foundation: Since 1972, Safer Foundation's mission has focused on supporting, through a full spectrum of services, the efforts of people with criminal records to become employed, law-abiding members of the community and as a result, reduce recidivism. For more information, visit

Survey Data Directions

(The information below replaces directions that appeared on page 28 of Safer's RFP issued on 8/12/2014)

Directions for using the American Community Survey Data to Identify Target Areas for High-Crime/High-Poverty Communities:

1. Begin at the Census Bureau web site at

2. Sometimes there is a pop-up advertisement for Census Bureau products. If so, Click on X to close the advertisement.

3. At the very bottom of the first page in the blue background under "Find Data" click on American Factfinder.

4. On the American Factfinder page in the middle of the page under "What We Provide" click on American Community Survey Get Data.

5. On the American Community Survey page, under "Refine Your Search Results" type in S1701 2012 5-Year. Then click on "Go".

6. The file S1701 Poverty Status the Last 12 Months 2012 ACS 5-Year Data will come up and check the box for this data set.

7. On the left side of page click on . The "Select Geographies" box will come up with four tabs: List, Name, Address and Map.

8. Click on . A map of the United States will come up. On the map of the United States, click on the desired state. A map of the state will appear.

9. To the left of the map under the "Find a Location" tab you will see "Search for a geographic areas". Type in the name of your city and click Go.

10. A list appears with the city you wanted included in the list as well as other places in the state with the same. Click on your selected city. A map of your city will come up. 11. To the left of the map, click on and then select the 5th choice, . Make sure to click both boxes, then click on at the very bottom of the drop-down box.

12. After you click on update you will be at the bottom of the page. Scroll up so that you can see the map. The map of your city will now display census tracts.

13. You will probably need to zoom in on the map by clicking on the "+" at the top of the zoom scroll bar inside the map to make the census tract numbers legible. Use the "+" on the scroll bar inside the map and not the "+" in the blue border above the map.

14. To pan around the map, use the arrow keys inside the map above the zoom scroll bar.

15. Under the Select Geographies tab to the left of the map, click on the down arrow and select the 6th option, Census Tracts.

16. Next, locate the blue rectangle box and click on the dot point, the first choice. Your cursor now becomes a pointer.

17. Move your pointer over the map and click on each desired census tract(s) to be included in your targeted service delivery area. To conform to grant requirements the census tracts that you select must be contiguous. At times you may need to zoom in further to see street boundaries.

18. The selected census tracts will appear gray on the map and be listed to the left of the map. To remove a census tract from the list, click on the blue X.

19. When you are satisfied with your selections, click on to the immediate left of the map. Your selected census tracts will now appear as yellow on the map.

20. Next, click on < Topics> located to the left of the map. There will be a Dialogue Box pop up. Just click on the to close the Dialogue Box.

21. Then click on the title of the data file that you previously selected Poverty Status in the Last 12 Months 2012 ACS 5-Year Estimates, ID # S1701.

22. A table will display the poverty data for the Census Tracts that you selected. Use only the first row of data showing overall poverty numbers for each Census Tract. Use the first column, the total population of the Census Tract and the third column, the number below poverty. Use the directional arrows on the table to move from Census Tract to Census Tract.

23. Do not look at the poverty rate of each Census Tract. Rather, create your own table with a column showing the total population of each census tract and a column showing the number in poverty in each Census tract. Add up each column and divide the total number in poverty in all of the Census Tracts by the total population of all of the Census Tracts to compute the poverty rate of the entire target community.

24. To save your work thus far, Click on at the top of table. You will be given two choices-to either Create Bookmark or to Save Query. You may as well do both. First, click on Create a Bookmark and then click on add when given a prompt. This will save your work on your Favorites Bar. Second, select Save Query. Then click on Save when given the prompt and you will be given the chance to browse your computer's files to get to the file where you want to save your work just as you would if you were saving any other document. Then hit Save.

25. If the overall poverty rates of the Census Tracts you selected is above 30 percent, you are done. Print the table from the Census web site and go back and print the map and submit the Census table and the map with your proposal. You do not need to show the street boundaries on the map that you include in your application, but for your own later use you can use the zoom feature of the map to identify the streets that serve as the boundaries of the target area. In almost all cases streets forming the boundaries of census tracts will be shown if you zoom in close enough. In a few cases the map will not show the name of a particular street and you will have to use a street map or actually drive through the target area to identify the boundary street.

26. If the overall poverty rate of the Census Tracts you selected is less than 30 percent, you need to go back and add or delete Census Tracts. At the top of the page with your table, click on Back to Search. This will take you back to the page with the Your Selections box. Below the Your Selections box, click on . Then, at the top of the Geographies page, click on . This will take you back to the map that you have been working on.

27. You can proceed to add Census Tracts by clicking on additional points on the map and clicking on Add to Your Selections. To delete a Census Tract simply click on the red X next to the Census Tract in the Your Selections box. Again, as you add and delete Census tracts, the target area needs to remain contiguous.

28. Once you have added and deleted the Census Tracts, repeat steps 20 through 23 to access the table showing the poverty rates of your new set of Census Tracts. Again, click on Bookmark at the top of the table and select both Create Bookmark and Save Query to save your work.

29. To retrieve a Bookmark after you have saved it simply go to your Favorites bar and click on the item. To retrieve a Query go to and on the Census Bureau home page in the bottom of the page in the blue background under "Find Data" click on American Factfinder. Then in the bottom right hand corner of the American FactFinder home page click on , and then click on the Browse prompt to find the work that you saved on your computer.

Separately, Applicants must demonstrate that the target area is in a high-crime area by providing statistical data that shows that the felony crime rate of the target area is as high or higher than the felony crime rate of one or more of the adjoining communities. Applicants must describe the strategy and source for determining the high-crime rate, such as, but not limited to, using the felony crime rate of the closest police precinct that overlaps the target community as compared to the felony crime rate of the closest police precinct to the adjoining community.

Contact information: If applicants have problems with any of the above steps in accessing the Census data they can send an e-mail to David Lah at or call him at 202-907-6941.

Safer Foundation

Victor Dickson, President/CEO

B. Diane Williams, President Emeritus

Phone: 312-922-2200

Safer Foundation