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Instilling Change: Dennis Booker

Born in Saint Louis in 1994, Dennis Booker lived a confusing life. This life was filled with negativity, drug use, lack of motivation, and an absence of positive people to support him. These influences and addiction led Dennis to incarceration for a total of 6 years.


While in prison, Dennis decided to permanent change was his only option. Dennis began to facilitate groups in the Intensive Therapeutic Community (ITC), attended church and focused on his studies In English and self-help books. Dennis believes that daily reading of his Bible absolutely assisted with his reentry pre-release. Throughout this time in confinement, Dennis thought of his family and this helped him push towards lasting recovery. Dennis applied to a sober living house in Kansas City as his transition plan so that he could get a fresh start and begin a new life. Before his release he met the person that would be his Parole Officer in the community who mentioned the Second Chance Program and was encouraged by hearing about this same program from a friend who knew of them, as well. With all the negative influences associated with St. Louis, Dennis moved to Kansas City to embark on a lifelong journey of change.


From then on Dennis believes that Second Chance has been one of the most supportive organizations he has had the pleasure of being involved in. The Resource Specialist at Second Chance not only supported Dennis with employment readiness and placement, but stable housing and provided the tools he could utilize to make a better life in a new city. Knowing that Second Chance is always available gives him the encouragement needed to keep living a fulfilling life. Mr. Booker states that the Specialists at Second Chance have played a pivotal role in his hard earned 12 months of sobriety. And for that he is thankful.


Some of the biggest barriers Dennis has faced have been staying focused and not complacent about his sobriety. However, the support of his family, fiancé, and daughter have kept him on the right path of continued success in this new lifestyle. Dennis is most proud of his recovery process and his new positive outlook on life. Today Dennis is employed full time as an Iron worker. His hobbies include spending time with his fiancé, being at home, and playing with his dog.


When asked what advice he would give to someone going down the wrong path, Booker stated,” Let go of the past. If it does not feel right, do not do it. There is so much to be thankful for.”

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