Advocacy for formerly incarcerated youth in DC

Advocacy for formerly incarcerated youth in DC

The project offers DC youth recently released from prison monthly workshops that foster new support systems, job skills and tools, and confidence to pursue positive life paths.

Free Minds has served more than 1,000 incarcerated young adults in DC jails. These young men often return to society eager for a fresh start, but are hindered by the lack of a positive support system. After spending their teenage years behind bars, their experience as returning citizens is characterized by a lack of opportunity. Homebound youth need to practice social skills, bond with others, and learn the tools to make positive choices, but these options are rarely offered.

Our career readiness internships provide these youth with the opportunity to contribute to the community while practicing job skills such as computer literacy, reading and writing skills, public speaking, and essential workplace behavior. Interns also learn how to apply for jobs with workshops on resumes, cover letters, and job interviews. We also help members achieve their educational goals, whether it''s a GED, college education, or vocational training.

Long-term impact
We will nurture and maintain the relationships of trust developed in the D.C. Jail Book Club to give young people the confidence to pursue careers and education, leading to lower recidivism rates, stronger families, and Communities become safer.