Support a Re-Entry Program for Incarcerated Individuals

Why I am a Champion for this Cause

I am proud to support Civic Ensemble’s effort to raise funds for an 8-week program for individuals coming out of prison and jail in Ithaca, NY. In the spring of 2014, I volunteered as a teaching assistant with an education program at a maximum security correctional facility in Auburn, New York. There, I worked with intelligent, articulate and caring men who want the opportunity to raise their children, work, and be a contributing member of society. Once incarcerated, people released from prison are stigmatized for life, making it nearly impossible to find meaningful work, housing, receive food subsidies, vote, and participate as a full citizen.

Civic Ensemble uses theatre to help these individuals develop skills in playwriting and acting, so as to prepare them for employment within Ithaca community after the program. They are quite literally rehearsing for the active citizenship necessary to succeed in the world.

The Re-Entry Playwriting Program will provide an opportunity for men and women facing the challenges of re-entry to engage in creative work that will help them improve their communication, collaboration, and leadership skills. The program will offer participants the means to demonstrate attributes required in the workforce, such as punctuality, perseverance,  and interpersonal skills. Finally, the program will directly support participants’ job search efforts  by providing the opportunity for them to share their work publicly and interact with potential employers after the final performance. Employers will gain insight about the hiring potential of people with criminal records through their creative work.

Theatre can be powerful. Art can change lives. Help Civic Ensemble use playwriting to make a difference!

Civic Ensemble is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Donations are fully tax-deductible. Thank you for your support!


Connect to Rudy Gerson



  1. Posted December 4, 2014 at 9:58 am | Permalink

    HOLY CANOLI!!!!!!!! Rudy – you are rocking this thing! We gotta get a drink to celebrate soon!

    • Posted December 14, 2014 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      Let’s definitely grab a drink when I get back. I get back the 13th of January. I’m working on this other grant which should help too. I hope you’re doing well. This is awesome.

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$920 raised
$1500 goal

16 Contributions
Campaign Complete.