GEO Reentry Services’ Tuolumne County Day Reporting Center and jail reentry program in Sonora, California, recently celebrated their summer 2018 program graduates. The transition celebration was held at the nearby Black Oak Hotel and honored 24 graduates, with 14 from the Tuolumne County DRC and 10 from the jail reentry program.
“We are pleased to host this graduation ceremony that is a result of participants who have worked hard with the hope of attaining a positive lifestyle going forward,” Lesette Ortiz, program manager, said. “The GEO Reentry programming provided to the participants will equip them with the skills needed to reduce recidivism and create change to become law-abiding citizens.”
The keynote speaker for the celebration was Dan Hawks, assistant chief probation officer for Tuolumne County, who gave an inspirational message to the 24 graduates. The celebration also included two special awards which were provided to local community partners in the reentry field.
The Tuolumne County DRC has a tradition of presenting a “Commitment Award,” to acknowledge partners in reentry work. At this ceremony, Mr. Morris Gaede, an inmate program specialist with Tuolumne County, was honored with this year’s award.
A special award was also given for “Community Partnership,” to the Tuolumne County Collaborative Pre-Apprenticeship Program. The DRC has had a successful record of working with the Pre-Apprenticeship Program to provide participants with the necessary job skills to successfully reenter the community. Two participants of June’s graduating group completed construction training and certification through the partnership and will continue into union apprenticeship positions in electric and/or laboring jobs.
GEO Reentry values the work of the Collaborative Pre-Apprenticeship Program and their commitment to provide services that assist participants with being employment ready.
This is the third collaboration with the pre-apprenticeship program for the DRC. They previously assisted six female participants in successfully gaining employment in the construction field.
During the ceremony, the local school system also was recognized for assisting three of the DRC graduates in attaining their high school diploma.
Programming at the Tuolumne County DRC provides participants with coping skills, one-on-one meetings, parenting skills, substance abuse treatment and Moral Reconation Therapy. Individuals that are in-custody from the jail referral program receive one-on-one meetings, coping skills and MRT. Many individuals who begin in the jail program eventually progress to the DRC.