admin | 9/10/2011, 3:44 p.m.

Transitioning to freedom

Glover began directing a community-based program called LEAP (Ladies Empowerment and Action Program) last year. In partnership with Barry University, the five-month program teaches its students job and life skills, including anger management and problem-solving techniques. It also works towards changing their attitudes and is housed at the Broward Correctional Institute. Glover explained, We try to work with changing the mindset. [Because] it doesnt matter whatever else you give to someone, if the mindset doesnt change nothing will change. The program also works with inmates up to a year after they have been released from prison. One of the programs recent graduates is Shawana Dennis, who was released from prison this May. Incarcerated since she was 15-years-old, the now 31-year-old Dennis had been convicted of second degree murder. When she enrolled in the LEAP program, Dennis was willing to learn any skills her instructor was able to teach. Before I got into the program, I didnt have a goal, she said. I didnt even know how to set a goal. But through the Leap program I was not only able to set goals for my life but I was able to learn things abut myself. Yet as much as Dennis says shes grown, her teacher states she has learned just as much if not more.Glover said she was able to witness the far reach of Gods love. God does not love rape and he doesnt love the action but he loves the rapist and he loves me, she said. By Kaila Heard kheard@miamitimesonline.com