South Omaha nonprofit asking for financial donations to continue efforts
OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Norman Ralph, Sr. said before going to Generation Diamond near 25th and M streets, he had been on and off the streets, with stints in juvenile justice and prison.
“I ended up getting addicted to drugs and alcohol pretty bad there,” he said.
He and others transitioning back into society following incarceration said the nonprofit group has helped them find work.
“It started with Generation Diamond giving me the start that they don’t give you, the DOC doesn’t give you,” James Chambers said.
For seven years, executive director Blanca Mejia said her operation has not only been serving ex-convicts, but also refugees, migrants and the homeless. She and her staff help them get access to medicine, their state IDs and birth certificates.
“They can come here, they can shower, they can eat,” Mejia said.
They even offer tattoo removal.
Mejia said they’ve recently begun helping a Venezuelan family. With Title 42 expiring more than two weeks ago, she thinks more migrants from south of the border will come to her establishment, looking for help.
She said they’ve already seen demand for their services increase in the last few years.
“Every single week, we have someone new.”
She said her operation gets the majority of its funding from the Sherwood Foundation, United Way and the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.
Still, she said it’s facing a $270,000 gap for the months of June through September, so she’s looking for donations to keep its efforts going.
She said if Generation Diamond could no longer stay open, crime would go up.
“I was a frequent flyer in the system,” he said. “Coming to Generation Diamond has taken that away from me, has given me opportunities to stay free, has given me hope.”
For more information on Generation Diamond or if you would like to donate, click here.
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