At the Second Chance Initiative we believe that everyone deserves a second chance, regardless of their past.


We're on a mission to help women overcoming adversity build new lives for themselves. At the heart of it all: creating transitional employment opportunities that empower people to take control of their future.


Without a path to self-sufficiency, people cannot truly turn their lives around. We exist to address that problem. We are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to creating jobs for people who are emerging from adversity, including people transitioning out of homelessness, overcoming drug or alcohol abuse, and/or seeking reentry after incarceration. Our goal is to become a self-sustaining enterprise by making and selling handmade products.


The women we work with have spotty employment histories, often including criminal backgrounds, which make them unlikely candidates for traditional roles. This leads to a clear problem: we have women who are hungry to show that they are more than their past, but no chance to prove themselves.

We aim to be the launching pad where they can begin working towards a brighter future, thus breaking the cycle of shame and hopelessness that perpetuates relapse and recidivism.

A key component of breaking this cycle is changing the conversation. We do not see the women we work with as powerless victims. We see them as empowered survivors who have already taken the hardest step: they’ve decided they want something different for their future and are working to make that happen.

We know that they do not want handouts. They want the chance to stand on their own two feet. We want to give them a hand-up.


Every single one of us has needed a second chance. No matter who we are, no matter what our story, we’ve needed to start over at some point.

Our Founder & Executive Director Keely Carney needed exactly the same opportunity as our team members: her own story includes getting out of treatment, struggling to find a job because of her background and only truly turning her life around when she was offered a second chance.

Here’s what we believe:

  • Your past does not define your future
  • There is no shame in starting over
  • Seeking a second chance is a sign of strength and people who do so deserve to be celebrated

So, here’s to every time any of us have been brave enough to start over, and here’s to creating opportunities for others to do the same.