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Reflections From a Fortune ATI Counselor

Reflections From a Fortune ATI Counselor

10/03/2016

Fortune’s ATI (Alternative to Incarceration) program is a path to radical transformation. As an ATI Counselor, I’ve experienced it firsthand, in informative and rewarding ways.

I’ve had clients from as young as 16-years-old to almost 60-years-old. Younger clients often lack guidance and support when they initially come to Fortune. There may be a tug of war between their counselor and negative community factors that influence poor decision making. But we know that change may take time. It’s our responsibility as counselors to be patient and persistent, engaging with our clients until they are ready to modify their thinking.

In my experience, engagement is key.

In my two years as an ATI counselor, I’ve worked with over 100 clients. Most have moved on with their lives in positive and productive ways due to the tools provided by the ATI program. Though there are challenging experiences within our work, we don’t give up. We know that some clients need second, third and fourth chances to succeed, and we’re committed to helping them at each step in their journey.

As counselors, we utilize cognitive behavioral techniques, motivational interviewing, and regular supervision to address concerns and progress — all to shape paths to success. In our daily work, we continue to develop better strategies and approaches to providing client-centered, individualized, and strength-based services that meet our clients’ needs.

Being an ATI counselor has been an amazing experience for me. I’m honored to have been a vehicle for change at Fortune, and am grateful for the many ways it has prepared me for my future.

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