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Meet four ACE program participants who seized their chance and completely transformed their lives in ACE's one-of-a-kind programs.

The Association of Community Employment (ACE) is a leading service provider that combines workforce development programming with therapeutic counseling for people who face extreme barriers to employment like histories of homelessness, incarceration, and addiction.

ACE is a unique workforce development program because it incorporates critical mental health support and continues to work with participants and graduates for years, even after they secure employment. By combining trauma-informed, therapeutic counseling services with job-readiness, hard skills, financial literacy, and life-skills training, ACE has pioneered and tested a long-term solution to converging crises of substance use, mental health, and economic inequalities facing New York City.

ACE Graduate David has his dream job taking care of dogs every day – all thanks to the support that brought a glimmer of hope and offered much-needed job training.

A Maximus Foundation grant supported ACE’s two pillar programs, Project Comeback and Project Stay. Project Comeback helps the most vulnerable New Yorkers obtain the educational, interpersonal, and technical skills needed to secure and retain full-time, permanent employment. Participants engage in hard and soft skills training, financial literacy training, paid work experience, therapeutic counseling, adult basic education, and much more. Once employed, these graduates enter a life-long employment retention and aftercare program — Project Stay that helps them stabilize in independent living, build earning power, and advance their careers. These active graduates receive further training and scholarships, monetary bonuses, individual and group counseling, and various resources to meet their unique needs. Through these programs, ACE is effectively helping individuals gain employment, move into their own apartments, and reunite with family permanently.

ACE’s programs have helped over 3,500 New Yorkers overcome extremely challenging barriers. In 2022, 88% of ACE graduates secured employment with benefits, and 100% transitioned off public cash assistance. Learn more about ACE’s life-changing work and celebrate thousands of New Yorkers who have overcome incredible hardships to reach their professional potential and reunite with loved ones.

Giving back to the communities we serve

The Maximus Foundation is one of the ways Maximus employees are doing something greater together. Established by the Maximus Board of Directors in 2000, the Maximus Foundation is an independent, employee-led, 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. Employee donors pool their contributions together through the Foundation, increasing their community impact by supporting nonprofits that serve the same communities we do. Employee donors double their impact through Maximus’ dollar-for-dollar matching pledge and make their voices heard by nominating and voting for future grantee partners. Learn more at