Meet The Priest And Program Who Helped Richard Cabral go From Gang Member To Emmy Nominee
Imagine this scenario: You grew up in a rough neighborhood, fell in with the wrong crowd, joined a gang, committed a crime and ended up serving time for it. You’re then paroled and let out into the world. What’s your next move?
If you’ve been incarcerated, your chances of going back to jail are extremely high. In Los Angeles, Homeboy Industries is fighting to change that awful reality.
The nonprofit, based in east L.A., helps former gang members who’ve gone to prison turn their lives around by providing them job training and support.
Their motto? Jobs not jails.
Homeboy Industries was founded by Father Greg Boyle in 1988, who as priest of the Dolores Mission Church in Boyle Heights, witnessed the height of gang violence firsthand.
Father Boyle thought the best way to solve the gang problem in his community was by helping gang members earn a paycheck. As a result, he launched a small jobs program through his parish.
Since then, that jobs program has grown to include helping former gang members earn their G.E.D. and providing legal and mental wellness services.
Homeboy Industries estimates that they help about 10,000 people a year. Among the people that have been helped by Homeboy Industries is Emmy-nominated Richard Cabral.
Cabral was a former gang member who spent time in jail for almost killing a dude. After he left prison, Cabral went to Homeboy Industries. While going through the program, Homeboy Industries connected Cabral to a casting agency, which helped him get auditions.
Oh, and did we mention their bakery?
I mean, look at those cookies. Not only are they so mouth-watering, they’re helping change someone’s life for the better.
Homeboy Industries believes that every life has value and purpose. To celebrate that, they’re having their annual 5k run and festival this weekend.
If you live in L.A., stop by! You can feel good about yourself for supporting such a worthwhile cause. Even better, you can get you some tasty AF treats from their bakery.
For more information about the event, you can click here.
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