People make mistakes. When you commit a crime, you are required to pay your debt to society. If convicted, you go to in prison. Upon release, you have a strike against you, making it difficult to find employment, housing and social services. In addition, the lack of resources lead to a high rate of recidivism.
In 2009, the National Reentry Resource Center, using funds from the Justice Department, was launched with the mission of advancing and aiding in the re-entry of individuals from penal institutions into the community. According to The Office of Justice Programs, ex-offenders receive services from the program in different states, with funds and services dispersed through local governments, non-profit organizations and correctional institutions. The $300 million program includes vocational training, job placement, transitional housing and mentoring.
According to the White House, in 2001 the Faith-Based and Community Initiative became law to provide federal money for services to ex-offenders offered by non-profit organizations and faith-based groups. Faith-based programs offer access to recovery programs so that ex-convicts needing substance abuse treatment and support services receive help. In addition, other programs are helping grassroots organizations receive funding to provide needed services. A program administered by churches in Maryland serving recently released non-violent adult male offenders centers on employment training and placement while furnishing recovery support and counseling to help them transition back into the community.
Second Chance Reentry Program
The Second Chance Act was instituted in 2008 to reduce recidivism of ex-offenders while assimilating back into the community. By coordinating efforts of local communities and the federal government, the act aims to ensure the best uses of federal money. According to The National Reentry Resource Center, funds are available for mentorship, education, shelter, job training, community colleges, family counseling victim impact issues and reentry court programs. According to The Justice Center, the Second Chance Reentry Program provides money to states and local governments to aid a convict's safe reintegration into the community. The program also provides money to nonprofit organizations to mentor ex-offenders and provide transitional support for assimilation into the community. It creates grants to offer drug treatment to offenders while incarcerated. In addition, it authorizes money for local entities to create family treatment for incarcerated offenders who have small children. The program funds penal institutions to create re-entry programs that focus on housing, jobs and substance abuse issues.
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