The actor has opened up about how his mother, Leslie Hawke, wanted him to donate some of his income from his 1989 film Dead Poets Society to an organization called The Doe Fund.
“That’s the first charity I really learned about,” Hawke told Variety. “The Doe Fund provides transitional housing and training for homeless guys, guys getting out of jail, guys getting off drugs — guys who want to change their lives.”
“They also help them get back in touch with their families. That’s a big source of relapse. Most of the guys come from state prisons. Some prisons will give the guys a bus ticket, but some will drop them off on a street corner in the middle of the night. Some will just open the door and let them walk out. Everybody they knew was a criminal. What do they think is going to happen?”
The Doe Fund aims to develop and implement cost-effective, holistic programs that meet the needs of a diverse population working to break the cycles of homelessness, addiction, and criminal recidivism. All of The Doe Fund’s programs and innovative business ventures ultimately strive to help homeless and formerly incarcerated individuals achieve permanent self-sufficiency.
“I realized that men and women have been struggling to get along for eternity,” said Ethan, after visiting a Doe Fund facility. “You think your situation is so unique, but we have so much to learn from each other. I was really humbled by what these guys have to recover from.”
To find out more about The Doe Fund, click here.