By Vincent Thompson, Parole Administrator, Los Angeles Central Parole District

Young parolees are getting a jump start on their new lives thanks to a partnership between the Division of Adult Parole Operations (DAPO) and a charitable organization.

On Sept. 10, job counselors from the Los Angeles Urban League conducted a recruitment event at the Parole Complex in Los Angeles to recruit parolees for the Urban Youth Empowerment Program Works.

Participating CDCR departments included DAPO Southern Region, Los Angeles Central and the Mid-City Parole Districts. The parolees who benefited were between 18 and 24 years old, according to organizers.

Seventeen of the 39 parolees who attended, enrolled in the program. The parolees received information on receiving assistance with employment, vocational training (referrals) and/ or aid with education.

The Los Angeles Urban League provides monetary  assistance and stipends  to individuals who are enrolled in the program. The Urban Youth Empowerment Program Works assists young adults to become self-sufficient and change lives.

Parolees who enrolled in the program were given gift cards by DAPO as incentives for positive behaviors to encourage change.

The recruitment was eyed as a success due to the partnership developed between program director Willa Robinson, Parole Administrators Vincent Thompson and John Bent. There was also coordination by District Administrator Assistant Kandice Shaw, the supervisors and agents in the districts who coordinated with the parolees to attend the event.