As part of a Diversity Leaders Initiative community action project, Greenville Technical College and the Phillis Wheatley Community Center provided community members released from incarceration with backpacks containing toiletries, clothing, training information, and resources. The backpacks were presented to 25 individuals leaving Tyger River Correctional Facility in December 2020.
Greenville Technical College’s Returning Citizens Program at the Phillis Wheatley Community Center, which provides case management activities to remove barriers for citizens who are transitioning from the criminal justice system to productive lives, helped all 25 individuals find employment upon release.
Jennifer Moorefield, associate vice president for Economic Development and Corporate Training at Greenville Tech and a member of the Diversity Leaders Initiative Fall 2019 class, said the challenges facing those released include not only basic needs but also inclusivity and dignity. “Our DLI team wanted people moving forward from incarceration to know that they are being welcomed as they return to the community,” she said. “Helping them make the transition with basic supplies and seeing them progress by gaining employment were very gratifying for our group.”
About the Diversity Leaders Initiative
An award-winning program offered by Furman University’s Riley Institute, the Diversity Leaders Initiative provides participants new tools and perspectives to help leverage diversity to improve organizational outcomes and drive social and economic progress in South Carolina. As part of the program, participants work in small, cross-sector groups to respond to real issues and opportunities in their communities through service projects.