Tag Archives: woman2woman empowerment

Returning Home -Meet Ms. Venessa Jones

Ms Venessa Jones gives an interview regarding her participation in the Empowering Choices Jail Program at the Tuscaloosa County Jail. She was an active participant. She currently participates in the Empowering Choices Alternative 2 Incarceration community program and serves as a volunteer with the organization. The ECA2I program is a 14 week enrichment program that assist ex-offender women in making a smooth transition back into the community.

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Report Examines Private Probation Systems Funded by Probationers – CSG Justice Center

Report Examines Private Probation Systems Funded by Probationers
Thomas Barrett, destitute and living primarily off food
stamps, was arrested in 2012 for stealing a can of
beer valued at $2 and was sentenced to probation
with Sentinel Offender Services, a for-profit firm.
Despite selling his own blood plasma twice a week to
raise money, Barrett fell more than $1,000 behind in
his payments and was jailed for failure to pay.
© 2014 Jason Blalock for Human Rights Watch

 

Over a thousand courts in several states allow private companies to oversee probation, often with little government oversight or regulation. This report from Human Rights Watch, titled: Profiting from Probation: America’s “Offender-Funded” Probation Industry, describes these privatized probation systems, which are funded primarily through fines paid by offenders, and documents cases in which probationers were jailed when they did not pay such fines. To view the report, click here.

Source

DATE: 2/24/13

PUBLISHER: Human Rights Watch

LOCATION: New York, NY

URL: http://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/reports/us0214_ForUpload_0.pdf

Kidney Transplant 1 yr. birthday celebration !!!

Happy Birthday Sofia

Happy Birthday Sofia

Happy Birthday Sofia.  1 year ago I had a kidney transplant at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. The staff was excellent.

I had been on dialysis for 12 years before the surgery.  Although they called my disease of the kidney End Stage Renal Disease it was not the end stage for me. I continued to live and experience life without really missing a beat. I traveled to Bahamas, Mexico and across the US. I continued as the founder and exec director of Woman2Woman Empowerment . My husband and I have moved to 3 states. I continued to do dialysis in those states. Some good places ,some not so good.

I am so thankful for the person who donated their kidney by filling out the form on the license and informing their family. I am so thankful for the Dr.who performed my surgery at UAB. I am grateful and thankful to God for blessing me with Grace to make it through the 12 years of dialysis. dialysis is not an easy experience. It is painful if you do hemo dialysis. You are subjected to being stuck with large needles every other day. It is no cake walk. Along with the failure of your kidney can come other issues. These other issues can cause you not to be a good recipient for a transplant. I thank God that through the 12 years I was able to stay reasonably healthy and a viable candidate.

I never allowed the fact that I was on dialysis to rule my life. I was aware that God was not surprised my diagnosis of kidney failure. If God was not surprised then I needed to keep moving forward. I was not one to continually say ‘I don’t receive this”. I did not deny the fact that I was on dialysis. I did  not miss treatment. I went to treatment as directed.  I believed that God was aware of my situation and would heal, recreate or replace at his discretion. So I continued for the 12 years until I was called by UAB.

I would like to say thank you to the family of the person who ‘s kidney I received. Sofia(my new kidney’s name) is functioning great. Today is Sofia’s 1st birthday in my body. I celebrate the great job that she does and pray that she continues to do so.

If you are experiencing kidney failure or any other health issue, don’t lose faith or heart. Continue to live and learn and love.  Life is an adventure and try to find something to smile about every day.

thHappy Birthday Sofia !!!!!

Attention nonprofits -Beware of mild mannered volunteers with ulterior motives!!!

volunteers

Volunteers are  the life force behind a good nonprofit  outreach  community organization . Woman2Woman Empowerment is no exception. . We are presently seeking volunteers to fill several positions within our organization. As you know all non profits are always seeking volunteers. We always need bodies to help in all areas of the organization. The more hands the merrier is what I use to think. This experience might have changed that mindset for me.

We placed a listing on several sites for  volunteers for our program. Woman2Woman Empowerment  offers the community of Tuscaloosa Alabama  two program that primarily assist incarcerated and formerly incarcerated person  in making a smooth transition back into the community. When we interview individuals we are seeking a certain type of person who is comfortable working with ex-offenders and who believes in 2nd, 3rd and even 4th chances.

Our organization is not one of those that is so hung up on everyone having a title and an elaborate position. We are more interested in assisting our target population in reaching and obtaining their goals. I am the founder and Exec Director and I hardly ever introduce myself as such.   We try very hard to add people to our ranks that feel this way as well. We are not always successful. Sometimes one gets by us-for a minute anyway.

Non profits let me give you a word of warning

If your volunteer says:

  • I am not interested in a position and then sends an email about how easy it will be to create a position for them in your company -This might not be a good match.
  • While you and said volunteer are  at a meeting and before you got there they  told people about you and had to represent the organization ,but they never introduce you to the people they talked you up to at said meeting -This might not be a good match.
  • We need to discuss a some sort of position to compensate for the research, connections and information (1 week’s worth by the way) of work that I have done for the organization since I’ve been here) -This might not be a good match.
  • You would not have known about such and such if I had not told you about it. Even though its public knowledge in a public forum . This might not be a good match
  • If after one week they feel that they are irreplaceable -This definitely is not a good match.

Now don’t get me wrong. The majority of volunteers want to do just that, volunteer with the organization. They are happy to be a part of your service organization.  And to you, oh wonderful  sincere volunteer, I take my hat and coat off to you.  We love and welcome volunteers. Thank you so much for the extra pair of hands and feet and heart that you give to your community. You are not concerned with position or posturing . You are content to serve without a title or a check.

But there are a small constituency of persons who want to take over what you have spent blood sweat and years of tears  to build. They feel they can do a better job or they have better ideas or better ability and skills.  They are not content to just serve or be a leader within the ranks. They want to be CEO or Exec Director or Board Chairperson. They are coming for your position within the company.

get out 1

If you are trying to take over my position while I am still in it then you might need …….

And with all the tact that you can muster ,you have to convey to them that your position is not open at this time.  You have to remind them that the volunteer position they interviewed for is very important to the mission of the organization. And if they insist upon coming after your position with the subtleness of a rhino them you have to suggest to them that maybe ,just maybe this might not be a good match.!

FSU Homecoming Court Raises More Than $3,000 for Charities – Frostburg State University

FSU Homecoming Court Raises More Than $3,000 for Charities – Frostburg State University.

We are thankful for support for our organization from across the US.  Woman2Woman Empowerment was birthed in Cumberland MD which is a neighboring city to Frostburg MD. This young lady Candyce Thomas decided to raise monies for Woman2Woman Empowerment as part of her platform for her run for Frostburg State University Homecoming Queen. SHE WON!!!!  Congrats and we wish her much success in everything she does. 

We are so thankful for her interest and support for  Woman2Woman Empowerment.

Woman2Woman Empowerment featured in Campus Newspaper

1998 Alabama Crimson Tide football team

1998 Alabama Crimson Tide football team (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We live in Tuscaloosa Alabama. Home of the Crimson Tide Football team. Roll Tide!!! Woman2Woman Empowerment is featured in the Crimson White Newspaper for  July 31. I was more than pleased with the article. Please follow the link and let me know what you think

http://issuu.com/thecrimsonwhite/docs/07.31.13/11?e=0

Rejuvenated,Reenergize,Recommitted

Woman2Woman EmpowermentRejuvenated,Reenergize,Recommitted.

Greetings and Salutations,

I am not sure when I start using that opening but I love it. Any Who

I have titled this post Rejuvenated,Reenergize,Recommitted.

That is exactly how I  feel.  I am the founder and director of an organization called Woman2Woman Empowerment . We work with women returning to the community from incarceration. I never thought I would love this type of work, but I do. I love to see the light go on in a woman’s eyes when she realizes she can have better than she does now. I love helping them to move forward in a new direction. I love the look of accomplishment when they succeed in areas that they had previously failed. It is so rewarding. One of my dreams for this organization has been to open a empowerment house . This would be a place for them to stay when they return. The House would be a wrap around type service for them. I can see it being done here in Tuscaloosa, Al. So excited. God has been moving behind the scenes. Putting me in touch with some powerful people in reentry circles. I am so grateful and amazed.

Om May  7th 2013, we will launch the first segment of our Empowering Choices program. We will begin the aftercare support group and the mentoring program. We are actively seeking mentors who live in Tuscaloosa for the one to one portion. But we are also seeking mailbox mentors. We need people,( women for now) who would be willing to encourage an inmate that is currently incarcerated. You do not have to live in AL. You can live anywhere and participate.  No personal info(address or such) are exchanged. If you think you might be interested in such an endeavor contact the office mentoring@empoweringlivesusa.com .  We are also seeking volunteers for the office and  coordinators. Before you write us ,pray about it. It does require at least a 6 month committment.

You might read this and think that criminals deserve what they get. That is not my argument. what you might want to remember is that these women nd men will get out of jail one day. They will be moving into your neighbor hoods and cities. You should want to help get them on a path to being productive members of society. If they are not rehabilitated and redirected , they will revert back to criminal activity. Their criminal activity might just involve you. It is in the  society best interest to help them all we can. And truth be told you have a family member , a friend or some acquaintance that has a direct connection to an ex-offender.  For the protection of your stuff support the organizations and agencies that are working with reentry and rehabilitation.

God is doing great things in the earth today. Find out what He is doing and join him.