Allan Hancock College’s Beyond Incarceration Greater Education (BIGE) Club has been awarded a $7,000 grant from The Fund for Santa Barbara.
The club provides support and resources for formerly incarcerated Hancock students and outreach in the community.
The BIGE club plans to use the grant funds to support outreach efforts to local at-risk youth, provide support systems to reduce recidivism, and encourage young students to pursue college and a career.
There are more than 40 members in the BIGE club. Hancock officials say seven club members graduated with degrees or certificates from Hancock in 2022.
BIGE co-founder and outgoing president Arturo "Cheech" Raygoza is transferring to UC Berkeley to pursue a four-year degree.
“I am very grateful to The Fund for Santa Barbara for awarding BIGE this grant,” Raygoza said. “This club gave me and students like me the opportunity to succeed. These funds will allow us to give back and pay forward that opportunity to our community.”
Hancock's DREAM Club also received a $2,850 grant from The Fund for Santa Barbara to help provide undocumented students with resources and legal information.