When Jermaine Robinson got out of Rikers Island jail last March, he had nowhere to live and few real prospects for finding a job. But he did have something that would prove almost as valuable: The address of the storefront Harlem office where Getting Out and Staying Out operates.
“Without them, I wouldn’t have gotten where I am right now,” 23-year-old Robinson says.
The nonprofit, founded by retired cosmetics executive Mark Goldsmith six years ago, has helped some 1,500 young men incarcerated at Rikers chart new lives.
Only about 20 percent of those who go through the program return to prison, compared with nearly 60 percent for Rikers as a whole.