Kern County DRC participants turn away from crime

The Kern County Day Reporting Center recently held a Transition Ceremony to celebrate the program’s 29 graduates—the DRC’s biggest graduating class since opening in 2010.

GEO Reentry helped Kern County open the Day Reporting Center in order to help probationers turn their lives around. Since opening, the program has served 409 formerly incarcerated individuals and has helped the majority reintegrate into their communities as productive members.

One program participant and graduate, Chris Sandoval, used to struggle with a methamphetamine addiction, which landed him in the county jail last fall. After a month in jail, he was referred to the Day Reporting Center. With the drug and alcohol treatment program offered by the DRC, Sandoval was able to successfully kick his addiction.

In addition to drug and alcohol treatment, the DRC offers a wide range of programs designed to help probationers like Sandoval learn the skills they need to thrive in the community and turn away from a life of crime. Programs include therapy designed to change criminal thinking, anger management classes, parenting skills, case management, life skills, education and employment training.

By addressing criminal thinking and offering a variety of rehabilitative programs, the DRC is able to successfully help probationers in addition to better protecting the community at large. Steve Farugie, District Manager of the Kern County DRC, said, “The bottom line is when these participants commit to change, we all benefit. We become a safer, stronger community.”

According to county probation, 70 percent of DRC graduates do not reoffend, compared with 47 percent of offenders not enrolled in the program.

GEO Reentry has helped counties and probation departments nationwide open similar Day Reporting Centers. All of these programs aim to help formerly incarcerated individuals turn away from crime by addressing criminal thinking and teaching skills that help them successfully transition from life in jail to life in the community.