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TDOC Holds Reentry Fair At NWCX

Thursday, October 21, 2021 | 04:14pm
Photo with participants from Reentry Fair

TIPTONVILLE – Northwest Correctional Complex (NWCX) held their first Reentry Fair in over a year after volunteer and group activities were suspended due to COVID-19.  Fourteen community partners from across Tennessee came to NWCX yesterday, October 20, 2021, to offer resources and tools to offenders who have approximately 10 years or less left on their sentence and are preparing for a life outside of the institution.

Dena Bottoms, NWCX Career Development Specialist, said the institution holds a reentry fair once a year.  “Many of the organizations come several times throughout the year, but it’s good to have them all in one place at the same time so we can meet the needs of the offenders getting ready to go home,” said Bottoms.  “We have had more vendors and community partners come out today than ever before and the inmates have been looking forward to speak to people who can help them transition back into the community.

Tommy, one of the inmates preparing for life outside the institution, said he was happy to see so many different organizations come out to offer assistance.  “The first thing I plan to do when I am released is go to a halfway house to work on getting my life in order, then I plan on getting a job as soon as possible.  I got information to work at Tyson, to work in the maintenance department, because I work on the maintenance team here, so I have experience.”

The organizations who attended the event were Project Return, The American Job Center, Tennessee Department of Health, Tennessee Department of Human Services, TDOC Housing Coordinator, Rick Ingram Ministry, Tyson, Dismas House, Tennessee College of Applied Technology, Dyersburg State Community College, Tennessee Prison Outreach Ministry, TDOC Day Reporting Center/Community Resource Center, TN Reconnect, The Orchard House, and TDOC Community Supervision District 61 Employment Specialist. 

If you would like to get involved with reentry efforts at NWCX contact Reentry Specialist Dena Bottoms at Dena.S.Bottoms@tn.gov; or Larry Watts at Larry.A.Watts@tn.gov.