PEARL, Miss. (WJTV) – On Thursday, military veterans joined Habitat for Humanity Mississippi Capital Area (HFHMCA) to help work on a project called “Project Second Chance” in Jackson.
“Project Second Chance” is a skills-based carpentry program developed by the Mississippi Construction Education Foundation in partnership with the Mississippi Department of Corrections and Mississippi Veterans Affairs. Its goal is to provide a pathway to success for veterans returning from active duty or serving time in prison while addressing Mississippi’s shortage of skilled workers.
“Since launching the program in February, we’ve seen participants make significant progress in learning new skills on which they can build stable careers and futures,” said Mike Barkett, MCEF president. “We believe veterans who have served their country with honor but have fallen on difficult times deserve a second chance at life, and this program is helping them become contributing members of society again.”
The 12-week program, which began February 8 at MCEF’s training center in Pearl, provides tools, clothing, books and other necessities for participants along with $300 a week and job placement upon successful completion. For incarcerated veterans, funds are held in escrow until they are released from prison.
Graduates also receive level-one national credentials from the National Center for Construction Education and Research and can keep their program-issued tools and clothing.