The Mission of HOPE

The Foundation of HOPE is an interfaith non-profit with the mission of “Empowering people impacted by the criminal justice system to renew their faith, rebuild their lives, and restore positive relationships.”

The History of HOPE

The Foundation of HOPE grew out of Christian Associates of Southwest Pennsylvania’s (CASP) former chaplaincy program. CASP incubated, fostered, and nurtured the growth of HOPE. The two organizations continue to work closely with one another as partners in ministry.

The Foundation of HOPE offers incarcerated individuals and returning citizens the opportunity for a new life by offering three distinct elements of a continuum of care: Chaplaincy, Pre-Release, and Aftercare. We offer chaplaincy services and pre-release programs in the Allegheny County Jail. Our Aftercare office on Pittsburgh’s North Side serves returning citizens coming out of county, state, and federal institutions. The Foundation of HOPE also has diversion programs for Adults and Youth. These programs address the needs of individuals who commit non-violent, low- to medium-level offenses, keeping them out of the cycle of adjudication and incarceration.

The goals of the programs are accomplished through counseling, religious services, discipleship, practical resources and referrals, life skills education within and outside the jail, choice awareness training, and one-on-one mentoring. HOPE serves individuals regardless of their race, age, ethnic background, or faith tradition.

Since 2002, HOPE has been providing a continuum of care for those impacted by the criminal justice system in Allegheny County. The Foundation of HOPE became a registered 501(c)(3) in 2006.

HOPE currently offers its programs in Allegheny County but expects to expand services to other areas over the next few years.

Our Board of Directors


Jay Gilmer, Esquire, President
City of Pittsburgh, Public Safety

Rikell S. Ford, Vice President
Allegheny County Children, Youth and Families

Tom McCarthy, Secretary
Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, Retired


The Rev. Paul Abernathy
Neighborhood Resilience

The Rev. Liddy Barlow (ex-officio)
Christian Associates of Southwest PA

Maurita Bryant
Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, Retired

Laurie Du Chateau, Esquire
Buck Consultants

Major Earnest Fullwood
Salvation Army, Western PA Division

Jodi Gill, Esquire
Pennsylvania State University

The Rev. Brenda Gregg
Project Destiny

Taili Thompson
Operation Better Block

Removing the Roadblocks to Recovery

Without the right support and direction, a released inmate’s capacity to make responsible decisions and avoid repeat offenses is undoubtedly compromised. A recently released three-year study shows that inmates who received after-care services were significantly less likely to recidivate. In addition, the study indicated that for every $1 invested in social services, $6 in recidivism costs were saved.

The following insightful reports are available for more information about the need for aftercare services:

  1. Roadblocks to Reentry (PDF)
  2. Transition from Prison (PDF)

Allegheny County’s Department of Human Services Resource Guide offers a wealth of resources. Please click the following link to review the complete list of resources it offers, as well as those offered by other local agencies.
Allegheny County’s Department of Human Services Resource Guide

Visit our Resources Page for more helpful tools.

Follow the Foundation of HOPE on LinkedIn.

The Foundation of HOPE is committed to providing a non-discriminatory employment environment for its employees. The policy of the Foundation of HOPE is to fully comply with applicable federal, state, and local laws, rules, and regulations in the area of non-discrimination in employment. Discrimination against employees and applicants due to race, color, religion, sex (including sexual harassment), national origin, disability, age (40 years or older), military, and veteran status is prohibited.