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by: Bianca HolmanCaroline Bleakley

Posted:  Updated: 

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — Everyone needs a second chance. That’s what an organization called Hope for Prisoners is all about. It works with newly released prisoners.

Hope for Prisoners works with men and women helping them successfully transition to life outside of prison walls.

“You have to have support. First support comes from family and you have to have the support of community,” said Jon ponder, Hope for Prisoners founder and ceo.

Ponder was in out of prison for years until he finally got it right. He created the group in 2009 to give others the support he didn’t have.

“I speak from personal experience, when we’re dealing with people from this segment of the population, the majority of people really want to change but have no idea how to do it,” he said.

HFP has partnered with the Las Vegas Chamber, DETR, and Workforce Connections to host a virtual job fair on April 22. Here is a link with more information.

“It’s truly life-changing for them when they see there is an opportunity for them and they become some of the best employees inside the workplace because they are extremely appreciative of that opportunity and they really want to take advantage of it,” Ponder said.

The organization has hundreds of success stories ranging from people continuing their education to rising through the ranks on the jobs and becoming managers and even to reuniting families.

“Employers are looking a dedicated force. I couldn’t think of any other better population than the folks we are working with who are looking forward to and excited about the opportunities before them.”

Hope for Prisoners plans to broadcast their yearly awards ceremony to 21 different prisons across the country to inspire more people to turn their life around.