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 Opportunity Knocking (OK) is a career training and jobs program for ex-prisoners. 

See Opportunity Knocking event at the MIT Club of Boston:
Creating New Careers & Entrepreneurial Opportunities after Prison

Arlene Reed-Delaney, MD, Co-founder Opportunity Knocking 
Glynn Lloyd, CEO of City Fresh
Helen Elaine Lee, MIT Professor of Creative Writing
Sharon Seivert, Co-founder of OK; President, CLSI

Please contact us if you would like to support OK in any capacity and/or bring this program to your community. And, if you can make a charitable contribution to this worthwhile program, please click the donate button above.

Thank you!!

Opportunity Knocking (OK) teaches a powerful program that gives

ex-offenders a new lease on life,

Families the hope they need to heal, and that

stimulates economic revitalization of communities

So everyone can work and thrive together. 

” If you don’t prepare, then you prepare to fail.” 

 CLSI prepares e-offenders for new roles in society based on improved career skills & an assertive jobs/enterpreneurial program. Individuals acquire capabilities to succeed in their new endeavors. 

Overall benefits: strengthen the individual, family and community with an upward economic spiral.  It would also reduce recidivism rates and save lives.   

Problems CLSI Addresses: 

Ex-offenders: Don’t have jobs/income to start new lives; lack job & life skills training that could develop their innate gifts; can’t start own businesses.

Families: Give up hope, caregiver burn-out

Communities: Economic challenges; lack services

Solutions We Offer: 

Ex-offenders: This 3-part program: a) provides career training and coaching to secure a good job; b) a coalition of business partnerships to supply jobs; and c) entrepreneurial development to launch their own business. Provides ongoing coaching for continued mental, financial, & relationship health.

Families:  Parallel skill training; stable livelihood.

Partnerships: Concerned groups, businesses, agencies, banks to ensure gainful employment post-release

Communities: Economic revitalization through skilled labor, new business, return of citizens, out-reach and roll-out of education for all.

An Upward Spiral: Healing the Whole System

 Opportunity Knocking works with ex-offenders and communities to ensure that progress is built upon and infrastructure put in place to reduce crime in the future.  According to Mass Gov. Public Safety, in 2010 there were 10,276 criminally sentenced inmates in the jurisdiction of the DOC.  Of 2,344 inmates released in 2004 43% were returned to prison within 3 years.

The Costs to Everyone: (So much money, so few results!)

 The average length of incarceration sentenced males including paroles and discharges in 2009 was 4.75 years. The average cost to house an inmate was a whopping $45,917.05 per year!  

This staggering sum, however, is just the tip of the iceberg in real costs. Add to this: incalculable human misery, broken families, increasingly impoverished communities, downward cycle of a next generation with absent parents, lost talent, and extra care demanded by violence, depression, drug addiction, housing for disrupted families, lost productivity for the economy and never-realized creativity/inventiveness that we need to build our economy and nation.

Address Root Causes to Reduce Recidivism

We offer a comprehensive approach to address the underlying problems of crime and the effect on individuals, families and communities. 

Individual: Self-selected ex-offenders participate in a program which has proven successful in student, teacher and executive populations.

Family members: We will have option of a parallel program for families to increase the odds of building a sustainably better life for everyone involved.

Community: CLSI will work with funders to seed permanent businesses that are owned and operated by ex-offenders. Services offered will focus on filling the gap in their community-–such as urban farming, supermarkets. restaurants, auto shops, computer services, transportation services, etc. 

The Glaring Unfairness Factor: Disproportionate Punishment 


% of MA pop

% of Incarcerated













To learn more about Opportunity Knocking, please read this page &/or watch the MIT event video
And to support this worthy effort, please make a charitable contribution. Thank you!!

OK teaches 5 practical steps to create lasting change:

Reset ~ Reframe ~ Reprioritize ~ Relate ~ Repeat

This course provides a powerful compass for ex-offenders to navigate their way toward lives where they flourish and contribute their gifts to revitalize their communities, families, nation & world.

    Our Unique 5-Step Approach... 

for creating positive change is based on the cross-cultural image of the 5 Elements (the center & four directions) that have been used for millennia all over the world to promote well-being, balance & happiness. These elements are outlined in 5 steps for successfully changing  lives:

 1)     Reset (Your Core Identity/Values)

2)     Reframe (Vision)

3)     Re-prioritize (Mission)

4)     Relate (Interactions)

5)     Repeat (Structure).

 When these 5 steps are aligned, Synergy occurs and a total Reformation occurs in life, relationships & work.

The Opportunity Knocking Program was created by Arlene Reed-Delaney, MD, a psychiatrist experienced in the prison system and educational reform. She is joined by Sharon Seivert, author of The Balancing Act a book that forms the foundation for this innovative program.

Proven Ripple Effect Results...

CLSI builds on proven techniques that have dramatically reduced recidivism of ex-offenders in other states, the recidivism research of Alan Deutchman, successful community revitalization programs and our own success with at-risk youth in urban schools.

Michigan, Missouri and, Oregon have pre-release prison programs that significantly reduced their recidivism, making them the most successul in the US.

Alan Deutschman , in Change or Die, reports that only 1 in 9 people will change their habits even when told that it is likely they will die if they do not. He developed and tested a “3-Rs” process that completely inverted those success rates (to 90+%) in three areas: health care, prisoner recidivism, and labor relations. CLSI's change model encompasses and builds on Deutchman's success (see change model on prior page.)

 And lastly, this program builds on successful community Revitalization efforts--such as those in Oakland led by prison reform & environmental leader, Van Jones.

Building on our Successful History    

CLSI has worked with at-risk youth in urban centers, many who were already in trouble with the law. The good results we have gotten include:

Youth: In middle and high-schools CLSI has helped: 

  • increase  test scores
  • reduce stress
  • improve participation
  • increase attendance & a sense of belonging.

 Teachers: Reenergized physically and mentally; gained  techniques to engage students; increased professional community

 Schools:  Created student-friendly school community; viable, dynamic strategic plans; alignment and buy-in at all levels; increased student test scores; meeting AYP for involved students, gained a high-value program that can be rolled out at low costs.

Partners in this comprehensive program...

...include the ex-offenders themselves, their families and friends, volunteer prison or jail systems and self-selected staff, Core Learning Services’ team of facilitators and trainers, area philanthropists, social venture capitalists, foundations, community organizations, state, local and federal governments.