Homeboy Industries helps former gang member start over

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Javier Chavez, center, is  a supervisor and mentor at Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles. Jenny Ament
homeboy.jpg
Javier Chavez, center, is  a supervisor and mentor at Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles. Jenny Ament

Homeboy Industries helps former gang member start over

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Originally aired Friday, April 10, 2015

Javier Chavez was only eight years old when he began getting into trouble. By the time he was 11, he was involved in a gang in Los Angeles.

He’s been arrested multiple times, on charges ranging from selling drugs to weapon possession.

Chavez’s longest stint in prison was for four years. He’s 33 now, and says he’s getting a second chance at life.

Chavez works as a mentor, navigator, and recovery group facilitator at Homeboy Industries. Homeboy provides job training positions and free social services for formerly gang-involved, and previously incarcerated, men and women.

How hard is it to start over? Listen to the full story in the audio player above.