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‘Getting a fresh start’: Cenla man’s project to help released offenders

Published: Sep. 15, 2021 at 7:42 PM CDT
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - A Cenla man has partnered with the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office and Project Evolution, Inc. to help local offenders after they’re released from jail.

Quazeric Reed has created a project called the “Backpack Program.” It provides local offenders released from jail with a backpack filled with essential items needed to help get them back on their feet. The backpacks are filled with things like body wash, toothbrushes, toothpaste, etc.

“I want the inmates to gain strength and gain support that we are behind them,” said Reed.

Reed got the idea for the program from his partnership with Project Evolution, Inc.- a non-profit organization that works to help offenders as they make their entry back into society after being released from jail. The organization is based in Washington D.C. and Charleston, South Carolina. He wanted to do something for released offenders, locally, so he reached out to the Rapides Parish Sheriff’s Office Re-Entry Program.

“The re-entry program is designed to help those offenders once they’re released out of jail, so we can try to reduce the recidivism rate,” said Re-Entry Director Lahoma Richardson.

“We’re going to make sure they have what they need to be equipped to start their new lives,” Reed said.

He also said that he plans to continue this each month by bringing backpacks to those involved with the sheriff’s Re-Entry program so that those being released from jail will always be able to leave with essential items.

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