Sometimes, picking up the pieces of one’s life can seem like the most challenging task they’ve ever faced. If you or someone you know is a convicted felon serving time, whether they have recently been released or are looking at a potential released date, one thing they will need to deal within the coming days, weeks, and months ahead is reentry.
Finding ideal jobs, adequate housing, assistance programs, and more can be incredibly challenging, especially for somebody who has never had to deal with this particular situation in the past. There are numerous jobs, housing, and reentry programs in Texas that can provide a wealth of information and support for ex-convicts.
Taking the first steps.
If the felon is still in the prison system and is waiting for his or her release date, it’s important that they begin looking for employment opportunities and other services while they are still on the inside. Most prisons provide inmates access to various resources, including phone calls and the Internet in order to stay connected and gather as much information as they can so that when they are released their first steps are bit more certain.
One of the most important things any felon can do is reach out and connect to various organizations that may be able to provide assistance for them once they are released. In certain situations, the state may provide housing for a set period of time. This could be a matter of weeks or months. Rarely is it going to be longer than that. This should be enough time for the ex-convict to be able to secure adequate employment and begin the process of searching for work.
For those already released.
For ex-convicts who have already been released and have struggled to find work, affordable housing, and even resources to help purchase food and other necessities, it can feel like an almost overwhelming challenge, making prison life seem more attractive than being homeless or going hungry.
It’s important not to lose hope during these early months after release. Below are a number of reentry programs that can help ex-convicts find good jobs, decent housing, and other opportunities to help build a stronger, more positive, and brighter future for themselves and possibly their family.
This organization provides a website with valuable resources that can help people upon release from prison. There is assistance for both adults and juveniles. They can help these individuals find adequate health care, counseling services, adult continuing education classes, food, employment, and housing.
The Houston Food Back has a subprogram called Serving for Success. It helps train former offenders in jobs that can provide living wages. They would volunteer at the Houston Food Bank while gaining these valuable skills. They can learn culinary arts, become certified in warehouse management, and gain workplace literacy.
This department offers reentry programs and resources for people who had been incarcerated and recently released.
Goodwill is known for reaching out and providing numerous beneficial services to a wide range of people, including ex-convicts. One program they offer is Incarcerated Veterans Training Program and helps veterans find ideal employment when they are within 18 months of their release date. They can also provide assistance to veterans who have been released within the last six months. Another program they offer is Civic Justice Core. This helps former inmates between the ages of 18 and 24 who are stepping out of the juvenile justice system to gain educational opportunities and reconnect with their community.
One of the missions of this program is to provide safer communities by offering ex-offenders opportunities to become productive members of society once again. This organization can provide a wealth of resources, including information and job opportunities for those who have been recently released from incarceration.
This organization is focused on helping people who have made mistakes in their past become re-integrated and accepted back into society. They acknowledge that this process can take a great deal of time and be very difficult. They help ex-offenders make better decisions for themselves into the future, avoid falling into the common trappings of getting involved with similar people and a destructive lifecycle, and helping ex-convicts find reliable employment opportunities.
This organization helps to connect various partners and resources to improve nonprofit organizations throughout the state of Texas. They can provide valuable networking opportunities for those who may struggle in getting started once they are released from incarceration.
While this organization focuses on providing valuable ministry within the Texas prison system, it can also help inmates begin to establish better plans for their future, thus giving them better opportunities once they are released from prison.
It’s important that anyone who has been incarcerated for any length of time take advantage of the numerous opportunities that exist for becoming better integrated and reentry into society as a productive member of that society. The most important key in that process is finding adequate work.
Employment can be difficult to find for people with felony convictions on the record, and that is where these organizations, among others, can make all the difference in the world.