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Port Chester Daily Voice serves Port Chester, NY

Ex-Convict Finds First Job In Port Chester

PORT CHESTER, N.Y. -- Anthony Ford will soon be starting the first job he's ever had outside of prison and he said he feels like a changed man.

"It feels good just being free," said Ford, 37, who was released July 13 from Queensboro Correctional Facility after serving six years and 10 months of an eight-year sentence for illegal gun and drug possession. "But having this job, it's just a great feeling."

Toward the end of his incarceration, Ford was approached by Port Chester-based organization Saving Our Society (S.O.S), which helps men and women make the transition from prison to life outside through mentorship with volunteers in the community.

"Going from prison to the real world, it can be a real shock," said John Conyers, the organization's founder. "It's important to help them get back on their feet so they don't end up back in prison."

Ford was able to send out his resume and less than a month after his release, he was offered a part-time job as a custodian for Open Doors Family Medical Centers.

According to S.O.S., for many people coming out of prison, finding a job is not always as immediate as in Ford's case, especially in this economic climate, which is why the organization seeks to build a strong support system for them as they look for work.

Through mentorship, the organization assists people with building job-finding and social skills and providing them with necessities such as professional attire to go to job interviews.

Ford has a job now, but his connection with S.O.S remains.

"Even though I got a job, I'm going to continue to help out with the program any way I can," he said.

What do you think about the work S.O.S. is doing in your community?

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