Investing In Social Impact Bonds (SIBs)

Posted by Keller Strother, Director, MST Services

Using Social Impact Bonds to fund evidence-based programs

Evidence-based programs (EBPs) that help troubled youth are usually funded through the government and philanthropy. But to increase the reach and impact of these practices, the funding base must be expanded.

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Topics: social impact bonds,

Social Impact Bonds Help MST Make Impact in U.K.

Posted by Tim Bryson, Essex SIB Director (Interim)

See How MST helps Essex County Teens

Young people in the U.K. who enter social care typically have poor outcomes. They are more likely to re-offend, be suspended from school and unemployed by the time they turn 19. Out-of-home placement is also expensive for local authorities. They are responsible for children’s social care, but investing in prevention in times of austerity is challenging.

In 2012, there were 1,600 children in care in Essex County, and the number had risen by 28 percent over the previous five years. Essex County Council wanted to commission a service with an evidence base for working with this group, but was not in a position to take on the financial risk of failure. They decided to try Multisystemic Therapy (MST) to work with adolescent children on the verge of out-of-home placement. Two teams would handle 380 young people over five years. MST itself was not new to the U.K. What was new was a form of social investment called a Social Impact Bond (SIB). SIB_Graphic

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Topics: social impact bonds,

Getting It Right at Rikers Island

Posted by Jon Steinmetz

Recently, New York City newspapers published articles raising awareness regarding violent incidents at Rikers Island.   

For those not familiar with New York, Rikers Island is the city’s main jail complex, a 413.17-acre island located in the East River between Queens and the Bronx. If you fly into LaGuardia Airport, you will see the razor wire-surrounded island located only a short swim from the runway. Adult and youth offenders reside on this island dedicated exclusively to incarceration. rikers-525x300

While the news articles bring up significant concerns, the incidents of violence are not new. As one might expect, the occupants are not there because they are model citizens. A wide range of law infractions and violations can earn a trip to Rikers. The constitutionality of sending youth offenders there has been questioned, especially considering that "most


 of whom have not yet been convicted of crime, and about half of whom have been diagnosed with a mental illness," according to Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.  

Once there, safety is not assured. There are rival gangs looking to start a fight. Forty percent of the population has been diagnosed with mental problems. The staff response to violent inmates has resulted in frequent injuries and sometimes death.

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Topics: Multisystemic Therapy, MST, rikers island,, social impact bonds,

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