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Instilling Change: Jeffrey Allen

Staying on the right path is arguably the most important factor in personal success and rehabilitation. However, it is not always as easy as it sounds. There are plenty of distractions that can sway you from that path. For Jeffrey Allen, staying on the right path was his number one priority in turning his life around. He took it upon himself to put the necessary work in that would be required and took advantage of the help and resources offered to him along the way. Allen was determined to get his life back and start anew.

Prior to incarceration, Allen felt forced to sell drugs in order to get by. For Allen, life was all about the hustle. Allen was always on the move and had little to no time for family. This is a stark comparison from where he is at in life today. While incarcerated, Allen was able to get himself together prior to being released. Allen stayed sober, avoided the wrong social circles, didn’t get into fights and received no write ups. Additionally, Allen completed all the programs that were asked of him during his incarceration. Allen felt that if he started working on himself while incarcerated, it would make his transition back into society that much easier.

Allen heard about the Second Chance program while he was still incarcerated. It can be difficult to find the resources to help figure out what’s next and which direction to go once being released, so Allen took it upon himself to come to the program personally and get enrolled. When asked what barriers he has faced since reentering society, Allen said he hadn’t really experienced much. Allen credited Second Chance making his life a little easier in staying the course. Leaving the hustle behind, Allen and his Resource Specialist focused on stability and connecting him to his passions instead. Allen said that Second Chance has helped him tremendously and doesn’t think he’d be as far in life if he hadn’t been enrolled in the program. Allen added that the most helpful part of the Second Chance program is that it made him accountable. He expounded by saying that they helped him get ahead, but he had to help himself simultaneously. Eventually Allen was hired at Steamatic, and within a few months he was trusted with more and more responsibilities.

Allen is most proud of his ability to stay the course and not allow any distractions to veer him from that course. Allen advised others in a similar situation as him to come to the Second Chance program because he believes they truly give people a second chance and help them get back on their feet. In his own words, Allen said they help you “get your life back". Allen concluded that he was honored to be in the program.

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