Getting Back on Your Feet

It’s no secret that a criminal record complicates life — especially when it comes to work. If you can get a job, the next problem is usually finding reliable transportation.

I spoke to Dominic Duren, Reentry Manager at St. Vincent de Paul (SVDP), about possible solutions. Their goal? To assist formerly incarcerated men and women find quality employment. Of course, keeping that employment means finding ways to get to work.

SVDP’s Reentry Program partners with The Help Program, an organization that works directly with clients who have spent some time inside a cell.

“The only requirement to join our program is that you have to be someone who struggles to find employment, housing or resources due to an encounter with the criminal justice system,” Duren said.

Recently, a member of St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church (the founding organization of The Help Program) donated a 15-passenger van to SVDP to help participants in the Reentry Program with any necessary transportation needs.

“Currently we’re helping 30 people from the Winton Terrace area get to and from their first and third shift jobs at the Reds Stadium,” Duren said.

SVDP also provides gas cards and bus tokens for members who are starting to work. This assistance continues until they get their first paycheck. Some members have even received donated vehicles in order to make it to jobs that aren’t on the bus line.

If you’re concerned with your record and are looking to make a change, do yourself a favor: ask for help. 

SVDP: 513.562.8841
THE HELP PROGRAM: 513.432.0907