KELLY DAME firstname.lastname@example.org
Published 8:00 am, Tuesday, December 30, 2014
A local advocacy organization aimed at helping former offenders and in turn keeping recidivism rates low is ending the year with big news.
Rob Worsley, program director of Midland Community Former Offenders Advocacy and Rehabilitation, said a $20,000 grant from the Charles J. Strostacker Foundation was recently announced.
“That was the first large family foundation grant I have received,” he said. “This is huge for MCFOAR.”
The grant will be used to continue providing housing and rental assistance, behavior assessment and modification, and more. It also requires updates on housing, expenses and recidivism rates.
MCFOAR, which partnered with the Caregiving Network earlier this year, assists former inmates with obtaining housing, employment and other basic needs. The more those needs are met, the less likely former inmates are to revert back to their old ways, Worsely said.
“It’s a great savings not just to our community, but to the state overall,” Worsley said of the program to help inmates be self sufficient.
So far, Worlsey has about 290 client files, and an additional 30 workforce files. The local recidivism rate is pretty stable at 4 to 5 percent, while the state average is about 35 percent, he said.
“It’s been amazing since April,” when MCFOAR partnered with the Caregiving Network. In June, Worsley had 240 client files.
Worsley, a former Midland County sheriff’deputy and jail manager, went on to work with the state’s prison re-entry program. When funding for that program was discontinued in December 2012, Worsley began MCFOAR. He pointed out not only has he been in inmate homes, but he’s talked with offenders while they were incarcerated, so he understands their situations.
He said it costs $39,000 to incarcerate one person in a Michigan prison for a year.
Worsley can be reached at (989) 832-8533.