The St. John Parish Sheriff’s Office recognized 10 inmates who successfully completed the Opportunity Now Re-Entry Program at a graduation ceremony February 6, 2020 at the Leonard Robinet Multi-Purpose Room in LaPlace. Sheriff Mike Tregre applauded the graduates on their accomplishments in the program and stressed that they should continue to work hard as they rebuild their lives.
Also on hand to commend graduates were Opportunity Now director Joe Lewis and his staff members as well as Assistant Wardens Geo Giovingo and Sharon Sealy and Corrections staff members.
Opportunity Now is the only re-entry program with built-in job placement, case management and follow along services in the state, Lewis said. The local program is a collaborative effort between the St. John Sheriff’s Office, the Louisiana Workforce Commission, Louisiana Rehabilitation Services and the Louisiana Department of Corrections to provide work readiness, job placement and other self-sufficiency services to qualified inmates.
Re-Entry participants are required to successfully complete three months of intensive work readiness and life skills training. The courses are designed to help inmates make better choices and to cope with a variety of issues they may face upon re-entering society.
Sheriff Tregre, who started this program within the SJSO in 2014, said he is proud of the Opportunity Now partnership with the Louisiana Workforce Commission, Louisiana Rehabilitation Services and the Louisiana Department of Corrections.
“Working with these groups” Sheriff Tregre said, “the St. John Sheriff’s Office is able to assist in the rehabilitation of inmates and help inmates transition into society to become productive members of society.It has been a very successful program.”