'They probably saved my life' | Former inmate says nonprofit keeps him, others out of jail

St. Louis' Concordance Academy of Leadership turns the traditional approach to prison re-entry programs on its head. Rather than pushing people just released from prison to find housing and a job, the academy pays its participants a living wage while it provides them with the counseling and other support they need not to slip back into trouble. Once their lives are stable, they focus in the 18-month program on employment. The 6-year-old program improves the chances of staying out of prison by more than 40%, according to one study. Concordance is raising the money it needs to expand to other cities.

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