Offender Aid and Restoration (OAR) received the Spirit of Service $10,000 Grant at the 2009 Greater DC Cares Business and Non-Profit Philanthropy Summit June 16th, co-sponsored by the Washington Post Media. The award was presented by Deloitte LLP to a single non-profit in the Washington Metro area in recognition of the use the organization makes of volunteers to impact the community.

“This $10,000 grant is being awarded to strengthen the capacity of a nonprofit organization that is significantly impacting their community and would be utilized to advance volunteerism and service for greater community impact,” stated Vincent Ferraro, Deloitte Managing Partner, Greater Washington. “We are proud to recognize OAR for their contribution to our community.”

About 700 business and nonprofit leaders from around the Washington area attended the luncheon in which First Lady Michelle Obama renewed the Administration’s call for increased community service across the country. Mrs. Obama spoke from experience as she told the crowd how much she appreciated and understood their work — she herself once worked as the founding executive director of the Chicago branch of AmeriCorps. In her remarks she thanked those who work in support of the homeless, children and ex-felons – giving a hint that OAR would be awarded the Spirit of Service Award.

Offender Aid and Restoration (OAR), is a private, 501 C(3) nonprofit organization that serves Arlington County and the cities of Alexandria and Falls Church. OAR’s mission is to provide community-managed programs aimed at restoring the individual offender as a responsible member of the community by providing alternatives to incarceration, programs to inmates and services to ex-offenders.

OAR staff work with former offenders once they are released, helping them to find housing, social services and employment. OAR began its work in Arlington in 1974 when local citizens decided to do something about the lack of educational programs and re-entry services for inmates and ex-offenders. OAR has remained a strong, community-based program, working closely with the staff members in the Arlington County and Alexandria detention centers.

Greater DC Cares is honoring businesses and nonprofits that demonstrate outstanding support to the region. “This year, there were several qualified organizations nominated that truly have strengthened and served the region through their exceptional service and philanthropy. What set the finalists apart from other organizations was the positive impact that they had on the region and their own internal organizations,” said Dr. Madye Henson, President and CEO of Greater DC Cares.

In receiving the award, Dr. Gail Arnall, OAR Executive Director, thanked Deloitte and asked the audience to remember that each year, over 600,000 men and women come home from prison. They will all need a place to live and a job.

For more information visit the OAR website at

For a complete list of finalists visit