Fellowship Program - Diversion & Reentry

 
Graphic with raised fists of power. Text reads "The Access Living Diversion & Reentry Fellowship. A fellowship program for people with disabilities impacted by the criminal justice system."

Apply to be a Diversion & Reentry Fellow

Application Deadline: September 2, 2022

The Access Living Diversion & Reentry Fellowship Program serves two purposes: to empower people with disabilities impacted by the justice system, and to build the capacity of Access Living to address issues related to Diversion and Reentry efforts in the criminal justice system.

Fellows join a large network of disability advocates and allies in the pursuit of a more fair and equitable criminal justice system for people with disabilities.

Why become a fellow?

Determine Your Own Direction
As an Access Living Diversion & Reentry Fellow, you will have the power to to develop a project based on your own areas of passion, interest, and/or expertise. With the support of Access Living’s Diversion and Reentry Policy Analyst you will have the opportunity to determine the focus, scope, and outcomes of your project to help meet the needs of impacted people with disabilities in the criminal justice system.

Enhance Your Knowledge, Skills and Experiences
You will have the opportunity to develop a wide range of skills from writing to organizing to policy analysis to better understand and facilitate change on issues related to people with disabilities impacted by the criminal justice system. Depending on the way you design your project, you can choose to focus on one or more skills that you would like to develop, or also focus on strengthening the skills that you already have acquired.

Expand Your Connections
As a leading disability advocacy organization on issues related to people with disabilities, Access Living has a national network of potential supporters eager to help you advance your work related to people with disabilities impacted by the criminal justice system. Whether it be support from foundations, non-profits, and government agencies, Access Living is in prime position to help you advance goals and work that seeks to support impacted people with disabilities.

Benefits:

Stipend
As a Diversion & Reentry Fellow with Access Living, you receive a $6,000 stipend for the duration of the six-month fellowship. The stipend will be broken down into six $1,000 monthly payments per fellow.

Leadership Development Training
At the beginning of each fellowship, all fellows will receive training to better lead on issues related to people with disability and policy work. This includes, but is not limited to: cross-disability analysis, constitutional protections, and review of pertinent laws related to people with disabilities.

One-on-One Advising and Support
Through weekly check-ins and quarterly reviews on project progress, each fellow is provided 1:1 advising from Access Living’s Diversion and Reentry Policy Analyst that helps to nurture the growth and execution of the project over the course of the six-month period.

Eligibility:

In order to be eligible for this fellowship, candidates must:

  1. Have a disability and self-identify as disabled. Medical diagnosis is not required.
  2. Have experienced direct impact from the criminal justice system. Direct experience with the criminal justice system includes, but is not limited to personal experience being incarcerated in jail or prison, or experience being on probation, parole, or electronic monitoring.
  3. Commit 15 hours/week to the completion of their fellowship project.
  4. Fully understand and support Access Living’s mission. Please review the Access Living website to see if your work aligns with the interests and efforts of the organization. If you have any questions regarding the mission and work of Access Living, please contact Chris Huff at chuff@accessliving.org.

Fellowship Projects:

Access Living Diversion & Reentry Fellows develop a project based on their interests and areas of expertise that helps meet the needs of people with disabilities who have been impacted by the criminal justice system. As part of the application process, potential fellows will submit a project proposal with their application.

About fellowship projects:

  • Access Living will consider projects in any issue area related to diversion and reeentry efforts of people with disabilities impacted by the justice system. This may include issues related to data collection, mental health, healthcare, housing, employment, or other prominent issues facing impacted people with disabilities.
  • Projects may include, but are not limited to public education, advocacy, training, community organizing, policy work, or a combination of these strategies.
  • Each project should give fellows the opportunity to exercise leadership on a distinct area of interest.

Examples:

  • Developing a deeply rooted podcast on how people with disabilities are impacted by the criminal justice system
  • Educating the public about the harm caused by different policies and practices by jails and prisons
  • Create an initiative to support impacted people with disabilities returning home from jail or prison
  • Write articles/entries that explore the intersections between people with disabilities and the criminal justice system
  • Elevating the voices, the of impacted people with disabilities to advance systems change and reform

Apply for the Diversion & Reentry Fellowship Program

Develop Your Project Proposal:

Step One: Identify the Issue

Consider your areas of interest and/or expertise. Consider the issues facing people with disabilities impacted by the criminal justice system and pick one that you have the most confidence and ability to develop a project around for the six-month period.

Step Two: Design Your Project

Based on the issue you identified, develop a clear vision, set of goals, and scope of work to be done during your time with Access Living. This should include a comprehensive list of activities and timeline for engagement. Candidates should be able to show a thorough understanding of the potential target audience as well as potential threats or challenges to completion. In this regard, you should be prepared to provide the following:

  • A two-three sentence description of the project and the issues it seeks to address
  • A statement of the need describing the issue to be addressed and the reason the project is timely
  • The goals of the project, including strategies, anticipated outcomes
  • A timeline of the fellowship project broken down into two month increments through the entire six-month fellowship
  • An acknowledgment of similar of similar services within the field with a description of what distinguishes your project, and ways in which collaboration may be possible

Step Three: Submit Application

  • Prepare your materials and fill out the form below to submit your Fellowship application.

To fill out this form be prepared to provide the following:

 

Chris Huff

Policy Analyst – Diversion and Reentry

chuff@accessliving.org

(312) 640-2131

  • The names and contact information of two references
  • Project proposal
  • Personal statement
  • Resume

Questions?

If you have questions about the Fellowship, proposed projects, the application process, or Access Living please contact Chris Huff at chuff@accessliving.org.

Application Form:

Application Deadline: September 2, 2022

Diversion and Reentry Fellowship Application

Part One: Background Information

Part Two: References (please provide the name and contact method for two references)

Part Three: File Uploads

Maximum upload size: 104.86MB