I wish to thank Stephen Jackson for sharing his story with our community [Stephen Jackson’s story of redemption, News, Aug. 19]. Your message reminds me, and hopefully others, that our community does offer second chances to those who wish to achieve a better life. Over the years, I have observed that your Oak Park Township work in Youth Services is helping to make second chances happen for others.

Thankfully, all the folks leading our public and nonprofit agencies, along with dozens of other volunteers involved in our OP-RF Community Foundation’s Success of All Youth (SAY) movement, are working hard to rewire our community so that all youth are inclined to make good decisions and to adopt healthy habits and practices that prepare them for college and/or career. Hopefully, the collective impact of our work will prevent the need for second chances.

As a self-proclaimed youth advocate, I encourage you and others to continue sharing your second chance stories because they will undoubtedly cultivate higher levels of individual and community-wide inspiration. 

Stephen, please know that my family is inspired by your work and your message. Helping all youth achieve success is a community-wide responsibility, and I have no doubt that together, we will improve opportunities for all children to achieve a meaningful, fulfilling life.

Mary Jo Schuler

Oak Park 

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