SALISBURY — Starting a new life and finding employment after serving time in jail isn’t easy, but a group of volunteers from the Service Corps of Retired Executives (SCORE) are helping inmates transition out of incarceration understand that their options could include starting a new business, if they so desire.
According to Jim Higgins, the clinical director of the Essex County Community Correction Center, SCORE mentors have been helping the inmates know their options for a few years, and their efforts are very well received.
“We’re very fortunate to have SCORE working with us,” Higgins said. “They’ve been counseling here at the center for four years. They come twice a year to speak to those here to help them understand about opening their own businesses.”
The Salisbury Women in Transition Center (WIT), for example, is a pre-release facility for those serving time in the Essex County Corrections system. At WIT, female inmates are helped with substance abuse, anger management and stress reduction issues, as well as literacy, life skills and after care planning that includes educational and employment assistance.
As they have in the past, last month, seven SCORE mentors met with 22 women in the Essex County corrections system. Working in five small groups, during the two-hour session and with the guidance of the SCORE volunteers, the women came to understand what it takes to be their own bosses.