Local program helps former inmates transition to new life

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A program focused on reducing the recidivism rate in central Ohio has graduated more than 500 participants.

The “Choose 2 Change” program through the Columbus Urban League, provides recently released inmates training opportunities to ease their transition from incarceration.

Program director Derrick Foster says the program meets weekly for eight weeks tackling every aspect of reentry – from obtaining the proper identification to dealing family dynamics that may have changed while they were away - with the hopes the transition will become permanent.

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“The average person doesn’t realize what these men go through and what they’ve been through in their life,” Foster says.

Each session welcomes 20 participants and the program has a goal of educating 100 men each year.

Program graduate Lovell Howell says the program has been life-changing, giving him the opportunity and skills to make a smooth transition.

“Being able to give my mother an opportunity to look down and see that I finally made things right.”

For more information on the Choose 2 Change program through the Columbus Urban League, click here.