FREE Launches the Two Million Feet of Hope Campaign
The Freedom House Reentry Education and Employment Corp. (FREE) announces the launch of new efforts in its platform for mentoring, providing resources and support to formerly incarcerated individuals. The initiative, known as 2mfeetofhope, is the latest anti-recidivism effort from California organization FREE. First established in July 2013, FREE was first incorporated in Illinois as a nonprofit corporation. The mission of FREE is to reduce recidivism through reentry programming and by creating social enterprise opportunities that empower the formerly incarcerated, their families and their communities. The initiative looks establish 2 million Square Feet of commercial marijuana grow sites..
“We are waging a war on the war on drugs, “ said Dylan Hood, founder of FREE and 2mfeetofhope. He added, “One of the biggest differences with what we are doing is that we are a nonprofit, and I hope that more companies and organizations will take our lead. We plan to use the legalized cannabis industry to solve a lot of the social wrongs caused by prohibition and are really looking to shift the status quo. I term myself a disrupter...I want to disrupt the way things have been done and change things for the better.”
The campaign title 2mfeetofhope is representative of the of 2 million sq. ft. of cultivable grow space that is planned. This along with retail establishments, distribution outlets and the manufacturing of marijuana based products, FREE hopes to reach a modest projected revenue in excess of $500M annually. Up to 50% of this projected will go directly into programming and to other organizations whose mission, like FREE’s is to fight to reduce recidivism. Additionally, 2mfeetofhope looks to create 2500 high-paying jobs in the areas where the grow sites are located, with average salaries of $52,000 per year. The job benefits will include a 401(k) with savings, health benefits and tuition reimbursement programs. 52% of the workforce at the grow facility will be women.
"This facility is literally the first of its kind," remarked Dylan Hood, founder of 2mfeetofhope. "It is unfortunate that we are still in the middle of a society that unjustly and disproportionately jails people of color for nonviolent drug offenses. We are going to stop this cycle by providing opportunities."
2mfeetofhope is seeking $500,000 in donations over the next six months to launch its first grow site. These initial funds will be put towards an irrigation system, grow tables, grow lights and an extraction lab. Donators can direct their donation to any of these specific causes. Those who donate $100 or more will be entered into a naming sweepstakes to have a strain from the grow facility named after them.
Revenue from the 2mfeetofhope program will benefit existing programs: Children with Incarcerated Parents Program (CWIP), the Vet Help Phone Program (VHAPP) and the Get Help App™. "We believe that 2mfeetofhope is going to be an essential component in our growing portfolio of resources to fight recidivism and give help to the people in society who need it most," says Hood. "Helping to build this program will truly empower all of society, because we are giving people meaningful work in an industry that is going to affect all of society in the coming years."
For more information on the 2mfeetofhope program, watch the video here. Donations are administered here on the website. Amazon customers can elect to automatically donate a small percentage of qualifying purchases to FREE initiatives by going to Amazon Smile.
About FREE: Established in July 2013, Freedom House Reentry Education and Employment Corp. (FREE) is a non-for-profit organization the provides wraparound services to formerly incarcerated adults, veterans, and their children. Our mission is to reduce recidivism through reentry programming and by creating social enterprise opportunities that empower the formerly incarcerated, their families, and their communities.