The featured speaker during CRESC’s March 2018 meeting was Aisha Mobley, Assistant Director of Iron Dome Legal Advocacy Group. Iron Dome Legal Advocacy group empathetically provides legal advocacy and mentoring in areas of criminal law, evictions, protection from abuse orders, and school disputes, among others. The mission of Iron Dome Legal Advocacy Group is to mentor young people in the areas of public demeanor, the dangers they expose themselves to on the streets, and their rights and responsibilities if they do get into legal trouble. Iron Dome Legal Advocacy Group is owned and directed by successful ex-offender John Watson. CRESC would like to thank Aisha Mobley for spending her afternoon with us. For more information about Iron Dome Legal Advocacy Group, please contact 717 256 1120 or visit them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/irondomelag
A program helping young ex-offenders find a pathway in life.
The featured speakers during CRESC’s February 2018 meeting were representatives from the Tri-County OIC’s Project SOAR. Project SOAR is a three year re-entry program for 18 – 24 year old Harrisburg youth. SOAR is a comprehensive reentry program that will address the challenges of young adults who have been involved in the criminal justice system. The SOAR program aims to help these youth make successful transitions back into the community. SOAR services are available to individuals between the ages of 18-24 who have had involvement with the juvenile or adult justice systems and live in the City of Harrisburg. If you have any questions concerning SOAR, please call Priscilla Ferguson at OIC 717 238 7318 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. CRESC would like to thank the Tri-County OIC representatives for sharing their afternoon with us. To learn more about Tri-County OIC’s Project SOAR, please visit https://www.tricountyoic.org/project-soar/.
During CRESC's December 2017 general meeting, two successful ex-offenders joined the meeting and shared their stories of becoming successful after being released from incarceration.
The featured speaker during CRESC’s December 2017 meeting was Kia Hansard, Dauphin County Director for the Center For Employment Opportunities (CEO). Hansard provided an overview of CEO’s focus in job placement for ex-offenders, including a four step program model that gets ex-offenders working in “transitional work” during the second week of the program. Hansard discussed the efforts of CEO’s Business Account Managers to place program participants in full-time, permanent jobs in the community and highlighted the cash incentives (up to $500!) that CEO offers for retaining employment for at least 365 days. For more information about CEO, please visit www.ceoworks.org. CRESC would like to thank Ms. Hansard for sharing her afternoon with us and supporting successful ex-offender reentry by providing employment services to ex-offenders in Dauphin County.
Barry Nazar presents the CRESC "Presidential Award" to Larry Coleman for outstanding service to CRESC at the monthly meeting on Thursday, October 29, 2017 at Pennsylvania CareerLink in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Larry will soon be relocating to the state of Nebraska.
The featured speaker during CRESC’s September 2017 meeting was Shirley Moore Smeal, Executive Deputy Secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections. Moore Smeal suggested that the days of "operating in silos" have passed and that the time is ripe for improvements in seeing inmates as individuals. Moore Smeal shared that the PA DOC is taking steps to humanize the incarcerated environment including placing inmates in prisons as close to home as possible to support family support and interaction; assessing inmates to determine individual needs; offering success-oriented educational programs; offering over 28 vocational programs; offering Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) options; and offering Transitional Housing Units (THU's) or Reentry Service Offices (RSO's) and Veterans Service Units (VSU's). Moore Smeal spoke about some new initiatives within the PA DOC including adult coloring books, aromatherapy, fish tanks, colored bed linens, "chill plans" and murals in order to make prions more humanized spaces for confinement. CRESC would like to thank Ms. Moore Smeal for sharing her afternoon with us and giving us insight into the steps that the PA Department of Corrections is taking to humanize the incarcerated environment.
The featured speaker during CRESC’s August 2017 meeting was Bruce Quigley, Executive Director of the Union County Housing Authority. Quigley gave attendees an overview of Union County’s Justice Bridge Housing Program (JBHP), a model for reentry housing. Quigley described the six key components of the housing program that Union County has implemented which include: (1) defined target population; (2) Public Housing Authority operating the program; (3) tenant-based rental assistance provided in
accordance with the procedures of the Housing Choice Voucher program; (4) probation / parole supervision of participants; (5) community supportive services external to the Housing Authority; and (6) collaboration. Quigley also provided attendees with a “replication toolkit” to assist local stakeholders in advocating for the local housing authority to adopt and implement the JBHP. Quigley rounded out the discussion by providing statistics on the housing program’s success: of the 46 JBHP participants served,
28 of the participants moved from JBHP to Section 8 / Housing Choice Vouchers; 9 were financially able to move to non-subsidized, permanent housing; and only 9 (20%) recidivated. In addition, 32 of the 37 participants who did not recidivate obtained and maintained employment and two were on disability. A great program supported by great statistics! Quigley also provided a number of reference materials associated with the JBHP for attendees, which can be accessed below. Also, Quigley can be reached at email@example.com for additional information. CRESC would like to thank Mr. Quigley for sharing his afternoon with us and giving us insight into Union County’s Justice Bridge Housing program!
(Fox43) LEMOYNE, Pa. — Women came together in Lemoyne on Saturday to bring awareness to cultural diversity and unconscious bias.
The ‘Building Bridges: Women Coming Together Women`s Summit’ kicked off giving local women the opportunity to learn from each other, regardless of their background.
At the event, various community leaders from faith and human rights groups joined a panel of special speakers.
Organizers say the event gives women in the community the chance to embrace their differences and share common ground.
“It’s a great opportunity to talk to women about women and have them understand that whatever they want to achieve, they can, and there are resources available,” said Shirley Moore Smeal, Department of Corrections Executive Deputy Secretary & event keynote speaker. “It’s one of my passions to talk about culture diversity and women in the workplace and what we can accomplish together,” she added.
More than 50 women took part in the event this year.
Photo of Presenters: Maria James Thiaw (Author, Poet, College Professor at Central Penn); Janeen Christ (Amethyst Retreat Center); Ann Van Dyke (Community Responders Network); Aaysha Noor (Advisory Board member of The Council on American Islamic Relations); Cindy Beers (Owner, Red Head Yoga); Shirley Moore Smeal (Executive Deputy Secretary., Pennsylvania Department of Corrections); Samia Malik (Director of Education on American Islamic Relations); and Rev. Yvette Davis (Associate Pastor of Urban Engagement with Cookman Beloved Communities Baptist Church, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania).
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