Caitlin McGee: Intern spotlight
Here is a first-hand account from Caitlin McGee of her internship experience with Project Re-Entry, an organization dedicated to helping incarcerated individuals re-enter into society.
As a Project Re-Entry intern at the State Appellate Defender’s Office (SADO), I worked on Comprehensive Re-Entry Plans for individuals who had been sentenced to life without the possibility of parole as juveniles, also known as JLWOP. Recently, these individuals have been receiving the opportunity to be resentenced to a term of years, and maybe even be released on parole. However, after living in prison for the greater part of their lives, these individuals will need help getting back on their feet after they are released. Many of them have never had a driver’s license or a State ID. Many also are unaware of where their birth certificates or social security cards are located. They also might not have many family members that are able or willing to help them. This is where the Comprehensive Re-Entry Plans come into play.
As an intern at project Re-Entry, I worked with our clients, their lawyers, and interacted with their family in order to create a plan that will help them get back on their feet and be successful when they are able to re-enter society. These plans included their housing, food resources, clothing resources, transportation resources and even opportunities at the local libraries to learn the basics of the technology we use every day. Some examples of these resources were food drives, soup kitchens and thrift stores.
This internship taught me just how difficult it is for individuals who have been in prison to come out and live a successful life. During my time at SADO, I was able to not only speak to clients via video chat, but I was also able to meet individuals who had already been released and continue to help them with their re-entry in person during some of the programs that we put on for our released clients. This internship was very rewarding and helped me to see a new side of individuals who have been incarcerate