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Nonprofit organization to provide job readiness skills to ex-offenders

Second Chance .jpeg
Posted at 2:57 PM, Apr 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-20 12:39:00-04

BALTIMORE — April is National Second Chance month, a time to allow people to redeem themselves, and that's exactly what a local nonprofit is doing with one hammer at a time.

Helping, training, and providing homes or HTP homes, is a new nonprofit organization that teaches construction and job readiness skills to ex-offenders.

It was created by Aaron Thompson who's a community activist and construction manager.

Thompson saw how recently released inmates struggled to get jobs and turn their life around so to give them a second chance he created this program.

"We take young men that are formerly incarcerated, coming straight from jail, with no skills or anything like that. And we pay them to learn a trade. Once they go through our program and learn how to trade, we guarantee them a full-time job," said Thompson, director of HTP homes.

With the program, participants rebuild houses and learn teamwork through construction.

Second Chance

Each person is paid $15.00 an hour and receives free transportation to work, however, it’s required they obtain a GED or obtain certifications to further themselves.

The goal is for workers to get on the right path regardless of their history.

"I let these guys know that you're not a tough guy because you went to jail. You screwed up, but this is where we're going to make a difference," said Thompson.

"Mr. Thompson is the right person for this program. He’s like a father figure to us. He pushed us. He helped us grow. He helps us elevate and turn into very good successful men," said Al Jalloh, program participant.

Job skills aren't the only thing the program offers. According to the prison policy initiative, about 64 percent of jail inmates have a mental health problem and HTP homes is helping to address that.

The organization is always looking for community support through donations or volunteering.

They also have career fairs and other upcoming events. To get involved visit here.