I’ve served as a volunteer for the Foundation for Family Life (FFL) in many different capacities for 11 years. Before coming to FFL, my wife and I served as employment counselors and missionary coordinators for the LDS church at the West Jordan and Riverton Employment Centers. My initial efforts with FFL were to assess clients needs, help them create resumes, and guide them in learning how to obtain successful employment. Typically 95% of FFL clients find work within two weeks. We’ve also emphasized the importance of becoming valuable to their employer and helping them identify long-term goals for their ideal job and preparing for such an application.
I have served for five to six years as the chairman of the board of directors for FFL and continue to serve as a member of the board. I recognize the importance of that service but my true joy comes through one on one interaction with clients. In the last few years I have visited many potential clients in prison or jail (through direct visits or by mail). The purpose of these visits is to explain the requirements of the MentorWorks program and the value of having mentors and the structure of FFL to assist them in bringing to fruition their change plans. I also enjoy occasionally teaching self-reliance classes.
“It has been a joy to see them go through these early stages of change, improve their self-image, and ultimately achieve the capacity to fulfill their change plan.”
Over the years I have seen a substantial number of individuals who have succeeded in their entry into the community as a worthwhile participant. I have seen these individuals overcome many obstacles and have seen them find joy in becoming free from addictive substances and learn self reliance principles. The biggest challenge for individuals entering our program after incarceration is recognizing they are worthwhile individuals and they have great potential. Their prior lifestyle has almost always led to a poor self-image. It has been a joy to see them go through these early stages of change, improve their self-image, and ultimately achieve the capacity to fulfill their change plan. It has been a joy for me to associate with our program participants and to see these changes occur in their lives. I will continue to volunteer with FFL as long as I have the capacity to do so!