Thursday, December 22, 2016

12 Days of Hope: Forging a New Path After Incarceration

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It's hard to catch up with Lyle. He's extremely dedicated to his work at fellow nonprofit Bread for the City, where he works full-time. And, meeting Lyle now, you wouldn't guess he spent a portion of his life serving time in prison or living a life, that as he described it, was simply destructive. 

Lyle remembers his younger years as a time when he was making bad choices without much direction or thought for the future. Eventually, his reckless choices caught up with him and he spent many years in and out of incarceration.

In Washington, DC, the recidivism rate, or number of times someone with a criminal record turns back to crime again, remains stubbornly high. Our Welcome Home Re-Entry Program aims to reach this vulnerable group of people, many of whom exit incarceration with almost no resources or family to turn to. 

We help people like Lyle all of the time, by providing case management support and often pairing them with a mentor to help them navigate the challenges of daily life. 

In Lyle's case, it made all of the difference. 

For Lyle, the mentorship and resources from the program gave him the strength to turn his life around for the better. We met Lyle after asking him to share some advice on a video that plays in the lobby at Catholic Charities, seeking to encourage someone else who might be facing the same problems Lyle overcame: