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12 Angels Evergreen Fund
When you strive to heal an addiction you are reaching for your highest goal. It is profoundly spiritual. Anyone who has challenged an addiction has done holy work.
--Gary Zukav, author of The Seat of the Soul
Unemployment presents a stumbling block in anyone’s life. Every person on this planet wants and needs a purpose. When you aren’t hired because you or your background is not perceived as flawless, an added block is placed before you. Not so long ago, young women encountered this issue all the time. Employers worried that women would have to take maternity leave or worse, not return, so women were often passed over despite their qualifications. People with physical and mental disabilities faced similar hurtles. Eventually laws were enacted to counter the discrimination women and those suffering from disabilities faced.
Jobs are still tough to come by after the recession of 2008. Employers want reassurances that whomever they hire will be bulletproof from any illness or setback—impossible expectations even for the healthiest and most qualified among us. Now imagine you have a history of drug or alcohol addiction and go to apply for a job in an economy where everyone is struggling. We know that alcoholism and drug addiction are diseases, yet addicts and alcoholics struggle to obtain employment and understanding employers.
Social entrepreneur Alex Shohet understood this issue deeply. He and his wife, Bernadine Fried, have started excellent addiction treatment centers. Bernie, the clinician/therapist extraordinaire of 20 years, brings integrity, humility and passion to each client she encounters; Alex, his business-acumen. Both found that while they were excellent at providing care and support to addicts during treatment, resources weren’t available to help support these addicts as they began to reenter the community. As a result, many relapsed and returned to treatment, often again and again. Some ended up in jail, some didn’t survive at all. After watching this play out again and again, Alex and Berni began to look for a way to break this cycle and, in 2004, conceptualized 12 Angels.
12 Angels has a very succinct mission statement: To provide entrepreneurial training to recovering drug addicts and alcoholics.
Alex explains how they meet this mission: “We have identified ways for employers to hire and support recovering addicts, and believe in the power of mobilizing capital to drive social change.” The 12 Angels team consists of not only specialists in the treatment and recovery industry, but experts in fund management and capital markets.
One of Kelly’s goals was to work in the field of addiction recovery. She was a kind and understanding soul, who brought comfort and support to many people in many ways. In the spirit of her unwavering compassion towards others, part of the mission of the Kelly Ann Brown Foundation is to support research and development of effective treatment for alcohol and drug additions. 12 Angels Evergreen Fund provides investment capital, consultation and mentorship to businesses willing to hire and work with recovering addicts. Through partnership with these businesses, 12 Angels hopes to enable recovering addicts to enjoy productive and healthy lives.
Stay tuned for the project being created as a result of the KABF grant!
Click here to learn more about 12 Angels.