For Immediate Release

June 2, 2023


Amanda Powers
2nd Street
(518) 928-9888
[email protected] 

Grants total $50,000 over two years

PITTSFIELD, MA — Second Street Second Chances (known as 2nd Street) has received two $25,000 grants from St. John’s Episcopal Church in Williamstown. The church, which was recently the recipient of two unexpected and significant bequests, decided through its governing body to tithe 10 percent of the bequests to community initiatives consistent with the parish’s mission. 2nd Street is one of the first groups to receive support from this source, with $25,000 earmarked for 2023 and $25,000 for 2024.

Jim Kolesar, chair of St. John’s Outreach Committee, said the group held conversations with a number of local leaders to research opportunities for partnering more fully with organizations in the Berkshires facing pressing social issues.

“In looking for ways to use this bequest money to support lasting social change in the area, the parish’s Outreach Committee was pleased to learn of the launch of 2nd Street. Its creative, holistic, individualized approach seems poised to transform lives and, in so doing, advance the health of our whole community,” Kolesar said. “We feel blessed at St. John’s to be able to partner in this important work.”

Housed in the former county jail, 2nd Street’s initial goal was to connect with 100 clients in its first year; it connected with 400 in the first 10 months.

“We are truly grateful for these generous grants, which will cover a significant portion of our operating expenses for this year and next,” said Mark Gold, president of the 2nd Street board of directors. “Strong community partnerships are essential to our success, so we are honored and humbled to be chosen by St. John’s as a recipient of these funds.”

2nd Street Executive Director Jason Cuyler and Correctional Caseworker Lindsay Maynard of the Berkshire County Sheriff’s Office will talk with parishioners at an open forum after the 10 am service on Sunday, June 25. Cuyler and Maynard will provide an overview of 2nd Street and take questions.

About 2nd Street

Second Street Second Chances, Inc., better known as 2nd Street, supports formerly incarcerated persons in Berkshire County and connects them with the tools, programs and support they need to successfully reenter their community. 2nd Street is committed to treating formerly incarcerated individuals with respect and encouragement; providing them with job readiness skills and access to employment opportunities; preparing them to become productive and contributing citizens; and educating and advocating for communities to embrace them as such. Services and referrals include medical and mental health resources, substance use disorder services, financial resources and literacy, transportation, family reunification, housing, job training and employment, and legal services. Visit 2nd Street at