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“If you don’t stand for something,
you’ll fall for anything.”

– Alexander Hamilton

Dylan Hood, Founder of FREE

Dylan Hood, the founder of FREE, had an epiphany: Human beings make mistakes and most people who make mistakes deserve a second chance. Researching the concept of second chances and how they manifest in different ways, Hood became acutely aware of the millions of people who have made mistakes that resulted in incarceration. Many of these men and women were not given second chances but instead found themselves defined by their mistakes and trapped in the criminal justice system.

​A startling 40% of formerly incarcerated individuals return to prison within three years and never see a second chance. Furthermore, the largest population returning to jail and prison are the minority groups within the United States, black and brown people. Many of the incarcerated come from impoverished and disenfranchised communities with no social support systems in place. This problem needed a long-term solution. Hood traveled all over the world researching the correctional systems that fail, including the United States, and correctional solutions that seem to succeed. After countless hours of interviews and research, Hood saw that reentry is a complex problem with many moving pieces.

He wanted to empower impoverished communities to start businesses and become self reliant, driven by goals and freedom. Hood, wanted an easy and successful way for formerly incarcerated individuals to reenter into their communities, so he created FREE.

FREE is a unique idea leading to FREEdom

Freedom House Reentry Education and Employment Corporation (FREE) is a ‘wrap-around’ services which is completely unique. Other organizations imply ‘one-stop-shop’ services but fall short, which is why we continue to have many people returning to jail or prison everyday. Hood created FREE to reduce recidivism with a push of button.

Formerly incarcerated individuals now have access to much needed resources through the day-to-day trials of returning home. FREE offers mentoring, access to social services, state driven outreach, and professional services 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Through the Get Help App™Vet Help App™  and FREE direct services we help every formerly incarcerated person reach their goal and find freedom.

View our media kit here.

​FREE Public Policy Statement

Message from the Founder: ​

My mother was a social worker for more than 30 years. It is she who has shaped and guided my feminist and multicultural principles. I dedicated my life to social services because of my background. As a social worker, scholar, entrepreneur and policy enthusiast, I am committed to diversity and social justice. I strive to attend to issues of power, privilege, and oppression in all areas of my life.

​As a result, I am committed to these principles:

  • Ongoing self-examination, including vigilance regarding power dynamics and the assumptions and values underlying our views, goals, and commitments.
  • Sharing power, including transparency about power differences, engaging in collaborative processes when appropriate, and fostering the power of marginalized individuals and groups.
  • Amplifying and attending to the voices and experiences of groups and individuals with relatively less power.
  • Consciousness raising by attending to how individual or group difficulties may be shaped by political, societal, institutional, interpersonal, and other contextual power dynamics.
  • Focusing on people’s strengths and engaging these strengths to address challenges, including working toward social change.
  • Promote self-determination with program partners and co-workers we work with by developing tools that are informed by the needs and experiences of the constituent communities.