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Inmates get help to succeed on the outside

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A new program in St. Johns County will help jail inmates find success when they get out.

Operation New Hope is partnering with the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office to set up the nationally recognized Ready4Work program.

Before leaving jail, inmates will get reentry training, emotional support and financial guidance to earn a living wage once they return to the outside.

Operation New Hope President and CEO Reggie Fullwood says 95% of the people who go to jail or prison will be getting out.

“So if we can help those folks with the training they need to be successful, we know the outcomes, and we’re talking about public safety," Fullwood said Tuesday on First Coast Connect with Melissa Ross. "The return on investment is phenomenal because you’re saving money. No matter where you are on the political spectrum, it makes sense.”

The prerelease program is made possible largely from a two-year grant from the United Way of St. Johns County.

You can hear the full interview with Fullwood here.

Michelle Corum joined WJCT as "Morning Edition" host in 2012 and has worked in public broadcasting as an announcer and reporter for public radio stations in Lawrence, Kansas, and Interlochen, Michigan. She also manages WJCT's Radio Reading Service for sight-impaired listeners.