Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Changing Lives. Improving Communities

aka Connections Work   |   Reading, PA   |

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Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

EIN: 23-1969810


Connections Work improves lives and creates safer, more prosperous communities by providing services, support, and community reintegration to individuals involved in the justice system and to their families.

Ruling year info


Co-Executive Director

Peggy Kershner

Co-Executive Director

Nicolle Schnovel

Main address

19 N. 6th Street 4th Floor

Reading, PA 19601 USA

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Formerly known as

Berks Connections / Pretrial Services

19 N. 6th St., 4th Floor, Reading, PA 19601



Subject area info

Adult education

Corrections and penology


Financial counseling

Human services management

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Population served info





Economically disadvantaged people

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NTEE code info

Services to Prisoners/Families (I43)

Prison Alternatives (I44)

Rehabilitation Services for Offenders (I40)

What we aim to solve

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Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Reentry Program

Connections Work provides case management to individuals with justice involvement. Staff supplies referrals and information about housing, employment, drug, alcohol, and mental health treatment, as well as workforce development services: employment readiness workshops, job search assistance, and retention support, along with an evidence-based Cognitive Behavioral Interventions curriculum focused on employment.

The Employment Development Team works to develop and maintain relationships with employers to encourage opportunities for workforce development program clients who complete the program. provides ongoing retention support and assistance to the employer.

For individuals coming out of incarceration, obtaining valid identification, transportation, and work- specific clothing often stands in the way of securing employment. BCPS is committed to assisting clients with removing barriers to their success and covers the cost to obtain the required necessary for employment.

Population(s) Served
Incarcerated people

Pretrial Officers conduct post-arrest interviews and assessments of criminal defendants and furnish the verified assessments to the judiciary. Connections Work provides supervised release for criminal defendants who would otherwise remain in jail until the final disposition of their case.

Connections Work conducts a monthly review of the jail population to ensure defendants are not needlessly incarcerated due to their inability to post bail.

Connections Work provides personnel and support for the Berks County Treatment Courts. Pretrial Officers interview and assess treatment court applicants and provide referrals for drug and alcohol testing and treatment. Treatment Courts include DUI, Drug and Alcohol, and Mental Health Courts.

Population(s) Served

Mothers/Fathers Voice Program-
The Mothers/Fathers Voice program allows incarcerated mothers and fathers to stay connected to their children. Volunteers record the parent reading a story to their child(ren), and then the book and DVD are mailed to the child(ren). The child(ren) can then watch the video of their parent reading while following along in the book. Birthday and holiday cards may also be included to celebrate milestones in their childs life. This provides a sense of closeness between the parent and child that would otherwise not be possible.

Holiday Gift Project
Connections Work enlists volunteers, churches, and employers throughout the community to provide holiday gifts for children of individuals who are incarcerated or involved in the criminal justice system. In early December, the gifts are distributed at a special holiday event hosted by West Lawn United Methodist Church.

Population(s) Served
Non-adult children

Where we work


Since 2007


Standards for Excellence Certification 2010

Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback


Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work
Fiscal year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

Revenue vs. expenses:  breakdown

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info
Note: When component data are not available, the graph displays the total Revenue and/or Expense values.

Liquidity in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 10.59 over 10 years

Months of cash in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 2.1 over 10 years

Fringe rate in 2022 info

SOURCE: IRS Form 990


Average of 16% over 10 years

Funding sources info

Source: IRS Form 990

Assets & liabilities info

Source: IRS Form 990

Financial data

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Revenue & expenses

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Balance sheet

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

The balance sheet gives a snapshot of the financial health of an organization at a particular point in time. An organization's total assets should generally exceed its total liabilities, or it cannot survive long, but the types of assets and liabilities must also be considered. For instance, an organization's current assets (cash, receivables, securities, etc.) should be sufficient to cover its current liabilities (payables, deferred revenue, current year loan, and note payments). Otherwise, the organization may face solvency problems. On the other hand, an organization whose cash and equivalents greatly exceed its current liabilities might not be putting its money to best use.

Fiscal year ending: cloud_download Download Data

Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Financial trends analysis Glossary & formula definitions

Fiscal Year: Jan 01 - Dec 31

SOURCE: IRS Form 990 info

This snapshot of Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work’s financial trends applies Nonprofit Finance Fund® analysis to data hosted by GuideStar. While it highlights the data that matter most, remember that context is key – numbers only tell part of any story.

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Business model indicators

Profitability info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) before depreciation -$103,354 $374,273 $23,290 $510,302 -$353,463
As % of expenses -4.4% 16.8% 1.2% 24.9% -14.2%
Unrestricted surplus (deficit) after depreciation -$129,633 $344,074 -$9,164 $467,853 -$398,066
As % of expenses -5.4% 15.3% -0.5% 22.3% -15.7%
Revenue composition info
Total revenue (unrestricted & restricted) $2,268,740 $2,552,164 $1,829,044 $2,537,043 $2,494,879
Total revenue, % change over prior year 16.6% 12.5% -28.3% 38.7% -1.7%
Program services revenue 90.7% 89.9% 41.3% 32.5% 31.3%
Membership dues 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
Investment income 0.2% 0.3% 0.3% 0.2% 0.4%
Government grants 0.0% 0.0% 44.1% 56.4% 46.7%
All other grants and contributions 8.8% 9.7% 14.5% 10.9% 21.6%
Other revenue 0.2% 0.1% -0.2% 0.1% 0.1%
Expense composition info
Total expenses before depreciation $2,362,014 $2,223,563 $1,890,911 $2,052,663 $2,497,918
Total expenses, % change over prior year 29.8% -5.9% -15.0% 8.6% 21.7%
Personnel 69.7% 69.1% 74.6% 71.0% 69.4%
Professional fees 1.6% 1.5% 1.8% 2.7% 1.6%
Occupancy 2.7% 3.2% 4.7% 4.4% 5.0%
Interest 0.1% 0.3% 0.1% 0.1% 0.0%
Pass-through 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0% 0.0%
All other expenses 25.8% 25.9% 18.7% 21.8% 24.1%
Full cost components (estimated) info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Total expenses (after depreciation) $2,388,293 $2,253,762 $1,923,365 $2,095,112 $2,542,521
One month of savings $196,835 $185,297 $157,576 $171,055 $208,160
Debt principal payment $0 $54,491 $0 $344,195 $0
Fixed asset additions $0 $31,987 $0 $68,795 $50,334
Total full costs (estimated) $2,585,128 $2,525,537 $2,080,941 $2,679,157 $2,801,015

Capital structure indicators

Liquidity info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Months of cash 0.6 1.5 3.5 3.4 2.6
Months of cash and investments 1.7 3.0 5.7 5.6 3.8
Months of estimated liquid unrestricted net assets 1.6 4.0 4.5 6.5 3.4
Balance sheet composition info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Cash $118,216 $268,739 $552,284 $585,479 $534,652
Investments $220,699 $277,943 $351,807 $377,877 $262,372
Receivables $170,964 $220,337 $132,345 $162,447 $174,015
Gross land, buildings, equipment (LBE) $225,884 $245,363 $245,951 $276,412 $296,368
Accumulated depreciation (as a % of LBE) 44.1% 47.8% 55.2% 50.6% 52.0%
Liabilities (as a % of assets) 32.4% 13.8% 32.6% 2.7% 36.8%
Unrestricted net assets $449,154 $793,228 $784,064 $1,251,917 $853,851
Temporarily restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Permanently restricted net assets $0 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Total restricted net assets $0 $0 $0 $0 $229,468
Total net assets $449,154 $793,228 $784,064 $1,251,917 $1,083,319

Key data checks

Key data checks info 2018 2019 2020 2021 2022
Material data errors No No No No No


The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Letter of Determination is not available for this organization
Form 1023/1024 is not available for this organization

Co-Executive Director

Peggy Kershner

Peggy started her career with Connections Work in 1985. During her tenure she has served as the Volunteer Program Coordinator, Development Director, and Deputy Director.

Co-Executive Director

Nicolle Schnovel

Nikki has been with Connections Work since 2001. She started as a Pretrial Officer, was promoted to the Programming and Development Director, and also served as the Pretrial Services Director for 9 years.

Number of employees

Source: IRS Form 990

Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Officers, directors, trustees, and key employees

SOURCE: IRS Form 990

Show data for fiscal year
Compensation data
Download up to 5 most recent years of officer and director compensation data for this organization

There are no highest paid employees recorded for this organization.

Berks County Prison Society, Incorporated dba Connections Work

Board of directors
as of 12/05/2023
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board of directors data
Download the most recent year of board of directors data for this organization
Board co-chair

Thomas Rentschler, Esq.

Board co-chair

Brian Pinto

Albright College

Term: 2020 - 2025

Jeannie Savage

Abhi Amatya

Sharon Mast

Larry Snow

Peter Terranova

Ronald Velez

Karissa Rodriguez, Esq.

Brian Pinto, CFRE

Alexia Pursley

Yamil Sanchez-Rivera

Thomas Rentschler

Leonette Stocker

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 6/9/2022

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.


The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity


Sexual orientation


No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 06/16/2022

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.