From a Teenage Felon to an Advocate of Change
Claudine BenArosh is living proof that it's not only possible for felons to start over after parole, but for them to succeed greatly.
Incarcerated at age 21, Claudine left behind a three-month-old son, promising college life and a mother struggling to support her daughter.
Claudine left prison determined to change her life.
Today, she is focused on sharing her journey and using it to help put an end to high recidivism for felons and to create alternatives to a life of crime for children of the incarcerated.
*Click the timestamps below to jump to a specific point in the episode.
[2:30] – Why is it important to decrease the rate of recidivism in our country?
[3: 47] – On the stereotype of a felon in our culture.
[4: 43] – How did you end up in prison?
[14:32] – You didn't do anything wrong, you just ended up with the wrong people, right?
[19:38] – Besides the movies ("The Godfather", "Scarface") and the culture, what else has influenced you to choose the path of crime?
[21: 55] – Do you think you life would have been a bit different if your father was around?
[25:26] – What was it like in prison? Can you describe it?
[27:20] – What did you expect?
[ 32:53] – While you were in prison, were there other women who thought and felt and had the same perspective as yours?
[34:45] – Did you go through prison as a 'victim' or as a 'hero'?
[38:22] – Do you think prison the way it is right now actually works? Do you think this is the best way we can deal with 'criminals'?
[45:11] – How did you deal with life and what did you do as soon as you were released?
[57:24] – What are some of the lessons you've learned in the streets and in the prison, so that our listener can get the benefits of those lessons without going to prison, without hanging out in the streets?
[1:00:59] – What are some of the things that you do now differently, as a result of your prison experience, that make your life better?
[1:01:57] – What are some of the aha moments that you've had in prison that influence your everyday life until this day and make it better?
[1:06:23] – What have you observed of your son's experience through your incarceration experience?
[1:09:44] – Study after study show recidivism rates in the United States at a disappointingly high level. According to a Bureau of Justice Statistics study (2005-2010), within three years of release, 67.8% or two thirds of released prisoners were re-arrested. That research team probed further and concluded, “individuals must decide independently to transform themselves into ex-offenders.”
[1:11:05] – Why is Claudine's story relevant and important in our everyday lives, even if we have not been and never will go to prison.
[1:17:20] – What are the three things you need in order to THRIVE during your typical day?
[1:18:45] – What is happiness to you?
[1:19:50] – What, to your mind, would be the greatest misfortune?
[1:22:02] – What is the biggest mistake you have made?
[1:23:15] – What would you do differently if you had to start all over?
[1:24:48] – What would you say is your biggest fear of moving forward?
[1:25:47] – What are you up to nowadays?
[1:29:36] – What is the best way to contact you?
[1:31:38] – Is there anything that we did not mention or talk about and you would like to share about before we conclude our conversation?
[1:32:56] – What is your definition of a Thriving Life?