Dept. of Probation’s photography program lets participants to learn new skill, pursue careers

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THE BRONX -

The Department of Probation has been implementing programs to help people turn their lives around.

One program in particular, a photography workshop, is giving participants around the city a chance to develop their skills - with some going off to purse it as a career.

Moshelle Fisher Scott reflects back to the moment she had a run-in with the law.

"It was very traumatic for me. I ended up having to do probation for three years. I thought I would never get a job," says Scott.

A bad decision that has changed the course of people's lives, but for some it has been an opportunity at a second chance.

The city's Department of Probation offers a free 12-week photography course called "Neon."

The program gives participants like Dylan Henry access to pursue a career in the business and even have a shot at teaching others.

"I have my own apartment now and a great job and I'm really proud, my mom could brag about me. She didn't get to do that when I was young," says Henry.

The workshops are open to the public throughout the city. In September, participants were chosen to showcase their work for a gallery in Manhattan called New Visions: Activism Through the Lens.

Each photo depicts what they see through a lens. Their stories, neighborhood, struggles and beauty. It also shines a light on changes the criminal justice system is striving for.

"It's not perfect, but I think the way probation has changed and some of the reforms they made are definitely a plus. They are really trying to do away with older practices and engage people more," says Scott.

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