CLEAN Program Motivates and Inspires People to Break the Cycle of Recidivism

For six months in 2019, the Franklin County Community Correctional Facility was home for Brandon after spending two years in prison. When he entered his first CLEAN class, Brandon was extremely reserved and even withdrawn. After the second CLEAN session, we engaged him to see if he wanted to be released from the class – but found just the opposite. Although Brandon processed the environment and learning in his own way, he had been spending extra time on his assignments and going above and beyond what was required.

The CLEAN program was breaking down mental barriers and opening his mind to a new way of thinking and living. Brandon went on to express that his vision and purpose is to be able to share his experiences and testimony to young people to prevent them from going down the same dark and over glorified roads of drugs, gangs and violence.

This is just one in dozens of stories that show, with the right tools and support, people’s perseverance to succeed despite their current circumstances.

The CLEAN program was launched in 2018 by business partners and former teammates Antonio Smith and Roy Hall. CLEAN works directly with correctional facilities, providing live training and group sessions designed to help men and women in the criminal justice system better themselves by encouraging them to adopt pro-social behaviors and break the cycle of recidivism.

CLEAN was born out of a place of compassion and healing for both founders, having close family members battle addiction and spend time incarcerated. As their 501c3 and core service platform, The Driven Foundation, evolved and required additional support to sustain programs, Roy Hall and Antonio Smith launched an Enterprise division. This for-profit entity is made up of programs that teach and inspire, as well as help drive additional dollars to Driven Foundation programs that serve a population with critical unmet needs like food, education and health/wellness deficiencies. The Enterprise programs include national speaking engagements, the Elite Leadership training program, and CLEAN, which is quickly growing to fill a critical need in community correctional facilities and justice systems.

CLEAN started as a motivational speaking program for residents in community-based correctional facilities, but quickly developed into a more robust program that offers live group sessions, utilizing cognitive behavioral therapy methods. The program currently works directly with Ohio correctional facilities, providing live training and group sessions designed to help men and women in the criminal justice system better themselves by encouraging them to adopt pro-social behaviors and break the cycle of recidivism. Additionally, CLEAN offers a digital platform that provides unlimited access to teaching materials and resources that aid in the reentry process.

Recently Smith and Hall took the stage at the 33rd annual Ohio Justice Alliance for Community Corrections (OJACC) Conference to share the success and impact of a program created to empower justice-involved individuals to overcome their circumstances.

Their presentation opened the door to expansion of the program state-wide as participants and leadership from community correction facilities across Ohio took interest in the program.
Participants commented:

“Best closing session I’ve heard in 12-years attending the conference.”

“I’ve been a probation officer for 7 years and this is a program that’s desperately needed.”

“I am so encouraged you are running this program. There is a real need in our facilities.”

“Please consider bringing the program to our county. It is so needed!”

“One of the core elements of CLEAN is helping program participants uncover and identify their purpose in life. This discovery is vital to true transformation of one’s mindset and perspective and is the glue that allows other positive reinforcements to stick,” CLEAN Co-Founder Antonio Smith said. “We’re very excited to present the success of the CLEAN program and the enhanced curriculum to this year’s OJACC conference and hope our message will continue to reach the people who need it the most.”

“Our initial motivational speaking program was solid, but we recognized a gap and had to answer the question…where does the support and continued motivation come from once the residents leave the institution? We knew there was so much more we could offer, so we set out to create a system that can consistently empower these individuals and expand our reach,” CLEAN Co-Founder Roy Hall said.

“CLEAN has truly been a vehicle for positive change at STAR,” said Charles E. Philabaun III, Executive Director at STAR Community Justice Center. “We have had several residents share with us that the lessons they learned in class have not only changed their lives for the better but have also impacted the lives of their families in a positive manner. The representatives of the CLEAN program are passionate about helping the men and women entrusted to their care live a drug and criminal free life, and I believe this program should be implemented in every correctional facility across our great state of Ohio.”

To date, over 2,000 individuals have experienced the CLEAN program through varying correctional institutions in Ohio and the number continues to grow.

“This program has so much potential and we’re just scratching the surface of what’s possible. We’re working hard to continue to expand statewide, and assist with tangible resources such as employment, financial assistance and housing,” Smith added. “Our goal is to help people rebuild from the inside out and gain the confidence and self-esteem to live their best lives. One individual at a time.”

For more information on the CLEAN program visit www.stayclean.us